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Startacus Monthly Financial News Round-up

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by Startacus Admin

Welcome to the Startacus monthly financial news round-up, brought to you by Sophie Turton of Crunch Accounting.

August was a record-breaking month for small businesses and startups. The number of Britons going it alone in business skyrocketed with the over 50s taking the lead for the UK’s most entrepreneurial generation. The government is also doing more to support the growing vanguard of self-employed and startups with alternative lending schemes.

All-time self-employment high

The latest employment figures from the Office for National Statistics have shown another record-breaking increase in levels of self-employment across the UK.

The number of contractors and freelancers has grown by 50% with latest figures topping 4.59 million. This is an increase of 10,000 from last month’s figures, which recorded 4.58 million freelancers and contractors.

Baby boomers produce more stable businesses than youngsters                                                              Uhm... This isn't exactly what we meant...

The number of self-employed people over the age of 50 is set to hit a record two million before the end of the decade, according to a study by the Future Laboratory.   

The report showed the so-called “baby boomer” generation have a better success rate than their “younger, sprightlier” counterparts, with 70% of startups being led by the over 50s lasting five years, compared to just 28% for younger generations.

The success of the over 50s was largely attributed to greater experience and business understanding, as well as the desire to keep working past retirement age.

Banks to offer alternative providersBanks that refuse loans to small businesses required to recommend alternative providers

Earlier in the month, George Osborne unveiled plans to improve access to credit for the UK’s small businesses. Under new reforms, High Street banks which refuse SME’s loan applications will offer to refer them instead to smaller banks and online alternative providers.

The Chancellor also announced that The British Business Bank, Vince Cable’s government-backed lender, will be given an extra £100 million to invest in UK firms.

Government launches new apprenticeship scheme

Employer-designed apprenticeships to help workers earn while they learn are being introduced in sectors across the UK. The sectors who will particularly benefit include engineering, legal and hospitality.

The 40 new schemes aim to incentivise people to consider apprenticeships and other routes into enterprise. They also give businesses the necessary control to design and provide programmes that meet company needs.

Recent government figures show that 47% of new apprenticeships are being created by small businesses, while 44% of companies across the UK intend to take on an apprentice in the next five years.

55% of SMEs export to the US

The USA is the UK SME’s top export destination, according to research by Barclays Business. France was a close second at 52% and Germany third at 51%.

A third of SMEs have hit their trading limit for the UK and are looking to foreign markets to further boost sales, demonstrating that the small business economy is indeed recovering.    Money Money Money

Steve Childs, the head of international at Barclays Business said:
“What is evident is that the world of digital has brought export markets closer to home for small businesses – being able to take payments online as well as using the digital channels to market open up opportunities for businesses that may have previously been harder to take up.”

Startacus gives a huge thanks once again to Sophie and Crunch Accounting for sharing their expertise !

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Published on: 1st September 2014

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