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SMEs find it hard to obtain feedback on their loan applications

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A new evaluation published today confirms that the smaller a firm, the larger the likelihood that its credit application might be declined by a financial institution.

European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship commented: "The financial crisis has affected the ability of the financial sector to channel funds to the real economy. SMEs in particular are key contributors to sustainable growth. However they are still finding it challenging to obtain financing. The evaluation published today highlights that receiving clear feedback from banks on loan applications is crucial for SMEs. Therefore it is essential to revive the dialogue between banks and SMEs.”

In particular, smaller companies are struggling to obtain feedback from banks on their declined credit applications even if they have the right to ask for it. To help them eventually to obtain loans successfully, smaller firms need to receive and act on feedback about areas in which their loan application was lacking. Research results indicate that clear benefits would derive for SMEs from obtaining such feedback: about half of SME respondents to the survey found the feedback received by banks useful as regards obtaining future funding. Therefore the evaluation recommends reviving the dialogue between banks and SMEs, by increasing transparency and making efforts to improve financial literacy in smaller companies. As small and medium sized enterprises are an engine of growth in the EU economy, access to credit is crucial both to their survival and that of our economy.

Press release
Evaluation report PDF

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