Lending figures set to rise with return of confidence The amount of peer-to-peer and other marketplace lending to SMEs fell from £2.37bn in 2018 to £1.9bn in the first nine months of 2019 while equity investments were also down from 2018’s figure of £6.7bn to £5.5bn. According to the latest 2020 Small Business Finance Markets report from the British Business Bank, lending from banks to SMEs was also down by nearly 2% year-on-year at £57bn compared with £58bn in 2018. Matt Adey, director of economics at British Business Bank, adds that business confidence was very low in 2019 but since the election, surveys suggest it is ticking up. “That will translate into investment plans,” he said. “There’s the prospect of things improving but that will take time to come through.” Over the last five years, peer-to-peer business lending volumes have risen by 374%, the BBB added.