Covid-19 lock-down business news update 2 June 2020.

2 June 2020.

James Salmon, Operations Director.

The Covid-19 lock-down continues and we are having to make do in a new normal.

Here are CPA we want to  share the business news stories we have seen that we think will affect our members and readers. Many of us are busy fighting to protect our businesses and therefore might have missed some of the news that could impact small businesses, their owners and those that sell on credit.

Covid-19 general news

MPs return to work today after a fortnights break. The government wants to end electronic voting and speeches over video conferencing and signal a return to work. Many disagree and want to maintain remote working. One wag estimated that a socially distant queue of MPs voting would be 1.3kms long.

Chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak told traders at a London street market on Monday that business would pick up in coming days as people started to get their lives back to normal following the government’s easing of the coronavirus lock-down.

Quarantine-Free Travel between the UK and some countries could be introduced at the end of this month if infection rates at home and abroad are sufficiently low. The government is understood to be considering so-called “air bridges” to enable people to travel without having to spend two weeks self-isolating on their return.

After 11 weeks of lockdown, bars and restaurants finally reopen again in France today and Parisians can again leave the city for beaches and holiday homes.

The latest results of a large trial of Gilead Sciences Inc.’s remdesivir drug showed only a limited benefit.


Shares in London were up yesterday with the FTSE100 up 1.5% to 6166 and the 250 up 1.4%. Shares across Europe were up too as fears over a further souring of the US-China relationship was avoided. Markets overlooked the civil unrest and Trumps threat to put troops on the streets as protests continue over the murder of George Floyd. The focus of markets appears to be on the expectation of further stimulus to boost the global recovery.

The S&P 500 was up 0.4% in the US with the NASDAQ doing even better, up 0.66%. In Asia the NIKKEI and Hang Seng were both up over 1%.

The US dollar continues to weaken with cable bvreaking through 1.25 to 1.254 and the pound also improving against the euro to 1.1235.

Hit to economy may be short and sharp

A report from Oxford Economics suggests a strong recovery following the covid-19 pandemic is likely, with the economic impact of the crisis potentially set to be sharp but short.

The report, commissioned by ICAEW, says that as GDP has declined due to a planned, partial shutdown of the economy, activity and demand should in theory rebound as the economy reopens, with fiscal and monetary support rolled out by the Government and the Bank of England amid the pandemic helping drive an upturn.

The study forecasts that further easing of lock-down measures in the coming months could deliver economic growth in the second half of the year.

The report says GDP could dip 14% in Q2, while unemployment is likely to climb 3% from 4% at the start of 2020 to 7% by year end, with the Government’s furlough scheme helping ensure the increase is comparatively modest.

The deficit, the report adds, is likely to hit £290bn in 2020 – around 14% of GDP.

On issues that could hinder an economic recovery, Oxford Economics points to an extended lock-down, a second wave of COVID-19 infections, Government support being withdrawn too early and a collapse of trade talks between the UK and EU.

ICAEW chief executive Michael Izza comments: “While this report sets out clearly the challenges facing the UK economy … it does provide some optimism that we will be able to rebound from this short, sharp shock.”

Government spending to exceed £1trn

Public spending is set to pass £1trn for the first time this year, with taxpayer money being pumped into efforts to support the country amid the coronavirus crisis.

Cara Pacitti, an economist at the Resolution Foundation, said: “The unprecedented fall in economic activity, combined with the Government’s bold and necessary measures to support firms and workers through the crisis, are inevitably taking their toll on the public finances.”

Isabel Stockton, an economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, said that if the Government continues to spend in a similar fashion, it will eventually need to generate more tax revenue.

Government borrowing is this year expected to hit £300bn, or 15% of GDP, according to Office for Budget Responsibility estimates based on a three-month lock-down.

Sunak considers NI holidays while tax rises are unlikely

The Telegraph reports that Chancellor Rishi Sunak is considering national insurance holidays for companies as part of an economic recovery stimulus package set to be unveiled next month.

Citing a source close to discussions on the measures being considered, the paper says tax increases under discussion in the Treasury, including raising income tax and VAT, are likely to be delayed until growth recovers.

The source said: “This will not be a consolidation Budget – tax rises won’t happen until the recovery is in train”, adding: “If you raise taxes while the economy is struggling at 1%, you could choke off economic growth.”

It is also suggested that stemming unemployment will be a focus of Mr Sunak’s stimulus package, with tax incentives or direct subsidies for employers who hire new staff among options that have been mooted.

Opinion: Tax cuts could boost recovery

Matthew Lynn in the Telegraph considers reports that Chancellor Rishi Sunak is planning to launch job creation schemes to help lift the economy, arguing that tax cuts and deregulation “will create new jobs far more effectively than lots of hastily assembled government projects.”

Mr Lynn says that with supply chains shutting and firms sliding into administration, there will not be enough companies able to take on staff once lock-down measures come to an end.

He suggests a large, temporary cut in employers’ national insurance would encourage lots of small companies to take a risk and bring in staff, while cuts in business rates could help entrepreneurs focus on working out ways of reviving “a shell-shocked high street”.

Saving inclination may blunt tax cuts

The Telegraph’s Tom Rees reflects on measures Rishi Sunak may turn to as he looks to nurse the economy back to health after the lock-down.

Paul Dales, from Capital Economics, says the Chancellor could opt for reducing VAT and income tax to bolster incomes, or tweak stamp duty to lift the housing market.

Kallum Pickering, UK economist at Berenberg, says that uncertainty may see people leaning toward saving while spending is needed to boost the economy. He comments: “Tax cuts won’t work because if you cut taxes when the inclination is to save, what will happen is saving goes up even further.”

House Prices

UK House Prices dropped at the fastest rate since the depths of the financial crisis in February 2009 last month, figures have shown, as the coronavirus pandemic brought the property market to a standstill. House prices tumbled by 1.7% in May compared to growth of 0.9% a month earlier, according to the closely watched Nationwide house price index.

Pandemic to see auditors get tough?

James Moore in the Independent suggests auditors, which have been “harshly, and justifiably, criticised” for seemingly turning a blind eye to corporate problems in recent years, “are finally of a mind to get tough”.

He says the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and shutdown means a large number of firms are likely to see question marks applied to their accounts over the coming weeks and months, with the issue of going concern among those auditors may flag. Mr Moore believes the wording of any warning will be important, saying regulators and the audit sector could address the matter in conjunction.

Reference to coronavirus and the uncertainty it has brought should suffice, he offers.

Ted Baker in £95m cash call

Ted Baker has raised £95m in an emergency fundraising designed to see it through the coronavirus crisis. The proceeds from the placing, which excluded individual shareholders, will be used to cut debt and pursue a “digital first” strategy that will see it invest in online sales. It said that shareholders who did not participate would have their holdings diluted by 74%. The fashion chain hopes to sell a further £10m via an offer open to new and existing investors. The Times looks at pressures faced by the company in recent times, noting that it called in forensic accountants from Deloitte after overstating the value of its inventory by £58m, adding that KPMG, which was fined £2.1m for its work for Ted Baker in 2013 and 2014, will be replaced as its auditor by BDO.

Monsoon in rent warning

Retailer Monsoon Accessorize has warned landlords that unless rents are waived, it will have to shut down stores. Founder and owner Peter Simon intends to buy the business back after putting it in administration, with Monsoon having been working with advisers at FRP with the aim of minimising its creditors’ losses.

Aldo in administration

Shoe chain Aldo has gone into administration, with administrators RSM keeping eight stores open while it explores further options for the retailer. Five stores, however, have closed, while its online platform remains active.

Fraud warning over HMRC email

Fraud prevention organisation Cifas has warned of a coronavirus-related scam that sees fraudsters pretend to be from HMRC, sending an email offering support grants of up to £7,500. A link in the email takes the victim to an application page designed to steal their personal information.

European manufacturing

Manufacturing in the euro zone had a small bounce in May, compared with the April, but still remains weak. The latest purchasing managers’ index (PMI), rose from 33.4 in April to 39.4 in May. Anything below 50 indicates a contraction. Germany recorded the worst score in the bloc, while Italian manufacturing dropped less than many economists expected.


The UK and Canada have both said they would not support the return of Russia to the G7. On Saturday President Donald Trump claimed the club of rich nations was outdated, and proposed bringing in Australia, India and South Korea, as well as Russia; Russia was expelled from what was then the G8 in 2014 over its annexation of Crimea.

Don’t let Covid-19 bust your business!

 It will if your cash flow dries up, either sooner or later.

The Credit Protection Association (CPA) has been assisting thousands of UK businesses to get paid since 1914. We have seen many financial crises, this one will be particularly deadly for suppliers for sometime to come.

CPA eases cash from tardy debtors – Efficiently, Effectively, Economically and Ethically. Above all tactfully, because maintenance of goodwill is paramount.

To meet the needs of creditors in the current crisis, we have designed a “critical care” package especially tailored for the situation.

  • The annual package costs start at very low rates
  • A minimum performance warranty is provided
  • Several complimentary services included

Clients instruct CPA on-line via their PC or phone, completely user-friendly. Your late paying customers are told to pay you direct (not to us).

A very recent report shows a 23% increase in the number of unpaid invoices since March 11th THIS YEAR – are you getting a build-up of late payers?

 Right now, overdue accounts must be a concern and CPA has a great track record of encouraging slow-payers to pay their suppliers quickly.

It takes less than 17 minutes to see how you would benefit, do you have the time now?

No face-to-face meeting required – just call Peter Uwins, CPA’s National Sales Manager, on 020 8846 0000 (business hours) or email today.

When you see your money come in, you will be so glad you used CPA.

Do you sell on credit?

With pressures on the cash flow it is essential that you stay on top of the credit limits you grant customers and watch carefully for any late payments.

Those customers will look for the easiest option  to boost their cash-flow. Don’t let it be you.

You can’t just assume your customers can and will pay you eventually, no matter how big their name is.

It is essential to have credit management systems in place to monitor and check your customers credit worthiness.

It is also best practice to use a trusted third party like CPA to make sure you are paid on time by customers, no matter how good a name they have.

About CPA

The Credit Protection Association can help!

Formed in 1914, CPA has been providing credit management services to SMEs for over 100 years.

At the Credit Protection Association, we provide first class credit information that can help you avoid being over extended to customers who are at risk. Our monitoring service can flag up warning signs long before the end, giving you the chance to adjust and reduce your exposure. We provide recommended credit limits and credit scores on a traffic light system and can help you set appropriate credit policies for your customers.

We regularly publish lists of the latest insolvencies but by then it is too late. Our credit reports however predict approximately 96% of company insolvencies long before they arrive.

Companies in trouble usually have very bad cash flow and they try to deal with it by delaying payment to their suppliers, increasing your exposure to them.

If you supply on credit, help us help you identify the risks.

Why use a third party collector?

As a third party collector, we can also get your payments prioritised over those who are not as hot on collections. When your customer receives a letter from the Credit Protection Association regarding their outstanding account, they are going to want to get that resolved as a priority. Our overdue account recovery service can get your unpaid invoices to the top of their “to do” list and get your invoice paid.

Over the years we have collected billions in overdue invoices for our customers.

Our debt recovery and credit management services give our members the financial freedom needed to grow and prosper, while our new Late Payment Compensation department could unlock hidden potential and offer the compensation needed to springboard your business to success.

You might be hesitant about contacting a debt collection agency. What are they going to be like?

Can they help your particular type of business?

There is no need for concern. CPA are courteous, helpful and very probably have had direct experience of working with your type of business.

Debt collection agencies are not all alike.

Success lies in both recovering money and keeping customers happy. The Credit Protection Association was founded in 1914 and  has helped tens of thousands of UK businesses to collect outstanding payments and reduce the risk of incurring bad debt. We believe that creditors deserve to be paid for the work or goods they have supplied but we fully understand the need to maintain
the best possible relationship with customers!

At The Credit Protection Association, we provide solutions, advice and back-up in all areas relating to the supply of services or goods on account. Client-members receive everything they need from a single source to reduce debtor days and write-offs.

The Credit Protection Association has helped has assisted tens of thousands of UK businesses with their credit control requirements, since the First World War.

We are polite, firm and efficient when it comes to recovering outstanding debt.

“We have used CPA for a number of years now. The website is easy to navigate around with lots of helpful reports. The staff are always at hand and very friendly. CPA has  helped us reduce our debt over the years and keep track of potential issues with our customers.”
~ CPA client in Buckinghamshire

“The service from CPA has proved to be everything that you said it would be. We have already seen a huge benefit. We have had a number of overdue accounts paid promptly and directly to us. It is also a huge weight off our mind to know that once we have passed an overdue payment over to you, you take care of everything whilst keeping us informed.
~ Credit Controller client in Warrington

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections


Ready to speak to an advisor?

For help or advice on credit management, entirely without obligation.

Call us today

0330 053 9263

CPA is passionate about late payment

The Credit Protection Association has been protecting smaller firms against poor payment practices for over 100 years.

We are extremely passionate about breaking the late payment culture that holds back the UK economy and threatens many SMEs with cash flow difficulties being the single biggest killer of Britain’s small businesses.

If you were regularly paid late we can help. Those former customers used you to boost their own cashflow, regularly paying you late.

As a result you had extra costs, you had the distraction of having to chase payment, you had opportunity costs because your capital was tied up in their late invoices.

Under little used legislation, you are entitled to compensation for those late payments.

Now you can boost your own cash-flow.

CPA can help unearth the those hidden treasures.

We have the technology to reveal the compensation you are due and we have the extensive experience and expertise to then turn those claims into cash.

Yes, CPA can help you boost your business cash-flow.

Don’t let your bankers control you, contact CPA today.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections

Read our blog here on how to crack down on the late payment culture.

Read our blog here on how to give late payers the slap they need.

The “Why” of the late payment culture.

New PM should walk the walk and back small firms over late payments

Paying late is “crack cocaine” to big business.

Late payment culture risks “spiraling out of control”

visit our late payment compensation page

See our full blog and FAQ on late payment compensation

Do you realise you could be sitting on a fortune?

Late payments often result in a cash flow crunch and leave SMEs in need of a cash injection.

If you sold B2B on credit then there may be a hidden source of capital you can call on.

If you fancy an bit of extra cash in your business, rather than jumping through hoops with your bank, you could look to uncover the resources from an unexpected source within your own business.

Not many are aware but there could be a hidden fortune within your business, sitting there, just waiting to be uncovered and released.

We can help you uncover the pile of gold, you didn’t even know you were sitting on.

If you trade with other businesses and were often paid late then you could be entitled to significant compensation.

Under little known and under-utilised legislation your business could be due huge amounts in compensation that you didn’t even know about.

Let’s be clear – this is not a way to weaken any customer relationships you value. It is one that identifies who’s been paying late and then recover the potentially significant sums in compensation using Late Payment Legislation from businesses where the relationship has already ended.

You can pick and choose who you want us to follow up – but once we’ve agreed which companies you’d like to pursue compensation from it’s a fast process and there’s no financial outlay to you whatsoever. My team at CPA put its expertise to work to recover the compensation due and fight late payment culture.

That compensation could provide the cash boost your business needed.

But don’t delay, that compensation evaporates if not claimed within six years of the late payment.

How can CPA help?

CPA has developed a unique technology to dig into your accounting records and discover the cash injection you are due by means of compensation. The software does all the hard work. Our software interacts over the cloud with over 300 different software packages, working directly with your accounts package, just so long as it’s stored on a computer.

We recognise that most companies do not have the resources to spend time on the identification and calculation of Late Payment Compensation. Our service can produce an Analyses within just a few days with (usually) less than 30 mins of co-operation from our clients. We work directly with over 300 accounting packages but can also work with bespoke accounts packages. Indeed, speed is essential as the oldest invoices may fall foul of the 6-year time limit.

Once the Sales Ledger Analyses is made available to clients, all that is required is that management decide which commercially sensitive ex-customers to remove from the list and return it to us.

CPA then uses its years of collection experience to explain and recover the Late Payment Compensation Claims. Clients do not handle any part of the recovery process as our team will take all communications from the companies against who the claims has been made. Often, it’s simply a case of explaining the legislation, sometimes we have to go all the way and enforce the legislation through the courts.

The result is that we are realising clients’ claims worth tens and sometimes hundreds of thousands of pounds which, of course, is pure net profit.  You may also be among the recipients of “hundreds of thousands of pounds” should you elect to take advantage of our services.

We do the work, you receive the cash.

If you have supplied goods and services to businesses on credit and were regularly paid late then you could be due significant sums in late payment compensation.

We are talking to companies and unearthing claims in the hundreds of thousands from former business customers who paid them late. Large business customers who abused their power to inflict unfair and sometimes illegal payment practices.

We are helping business owners  who are looking to boost the returns from their business before they retire. We are helping businesses who have lost major clients after years of loyal service to get properly compensated for systematic late payment. We are helping companies that were looking to close down, who looked insolvent and finding that cash injection they need to avoid insolvency.

Those former clients who regularly paid you late can finally be made to pay.

Ready to speak to an advisor?

For help or advice on credit management, entirely without obligation.

Call us today

0330 053 9263

The Credit Protection Association is a credit management company established in 1914. If you supply goods or services on credit then we can help you!

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections

Keep up to date with the latest news by following us on social media:-

CPA on Linkedin

CPA on facebook

CPA on twitter

See all our latest news here!

Housekeeping: Opening a New Account

Late payments are never good for business. What can you do?

Get paid earlier by understanding why late payments happen.

Protecting Your Business isn’t Half As Painful As You Think

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – recognising the types of payers you do business with!

See our blog on how to communicate with your debtor early and clearly to set the framework for prompt payments

Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Debt Recovery (But Were Afraid To Ask)

Understand the “why” behind late payments

Read our blog on what to do when not paid on time

10 Bad Habits Every Credit Controller Should Give Up

The Credit Controller’s Best Friend

Debt Recovery: It’s Easier Than You Think!

How Managing Your Cash Flow Can Make You (and Your Business) A Success

Avoid insolvency – Don’t let your money go up in smoke

Read our blog here on how to crack down on the late payment culture.

Read our blog here on how to give late payers the slap they need.

25 excuses for late payment and how to get around them.

Read our Cash Flow Advice

Read about our overdue account recovery service

Read our blog – What is credit management?

Read our blog – How to select a debt collection agency

20 ways to avoid identity theft

see our blog – 15 steps to avoid invoice fraud

Overcoming 5 common reasons for disputed invoices

As insolvencies rise, could you spot these warning signs in your customers?

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections