The SME finance monitor: The de facto authority on access to finance conditions in the UK

Shiona Davies and Caroline Ahmed
BDRC Continental


Bank lending to SMEs is at the heart of the debate about how the UK is to achieve growth, and an important policy strand for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. However there was a lack of robust and reliable data on which to base policy, a gap filled since 2011 by the SME Finance Monitor.

This extensive dataset is recognized by both public and private sector stakeholders as the de facto authority on access to finance conditions for SMEs, and is also a catalyst for change, because it is seen as reliable, trustworthy, and, crucially, as independent. The Monitor is cited regularly in Parliament, in government led reviews, and in evidence to the European Commission and OECD, as well as forming the basis for policy discussions between the banks and BIS.