Delay Covid debt till profitable-  business news 10 September 2020.

James Salmon, Operations Director.

There has been a call to delay covid debt repayments and  hold the repayment of Covid loans till businesses return to profitability, new grants for closed businesses, plus covid-19, market and other business news.

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.

Delay Covid debt till businesses profitable

A study by the centre-right think tank Onward has found that around 20% of British businesses are only making enough profit to cover their debt interest payments.

High levels of corporate debt built up by companies during the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed 4.3% of firms into technical insolvency, the report estimates.

Angus Groom, Onward fellow and report author, said: “The Government’s loans schemes have been highly effective at helping firms through the worst of the crisis, but they represent a double-edged sword in that they have weighed down firms with debt just as we need them to invest.”

About £53bn has been loaned to SMEs and The City UK has estimated that £35bn may not be repaid. Researchers at Onward are calling on the Government to convert the debt into “income-contingent loans” that do not need to be repaid until companies become profitable.

Businesses forced to close to be eligible for grants

The Chief Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay has announced a new scheme to help businesses survive closures due to coronavirus lockdowns.

Large businesses in England which are forced to close as a result of a local lockdown will now be able to claim a £1,500 grant per property for every three weeks they are not able to open their doors.

Smaller businesses will receive £1,000. The British Chambers of Commerce welcomed the payments but warned they would not be enough for many firms.

Mike Cherry, the national chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, described the intervention as “a much needed additional financial lifeline” while Annie Gascoyne, of the Confederation of British Industry, warned that more targeted support would be needed in the autumn.


A deterrent to corona-fraud would improve public finances

The Times’ Patrick Hosking says public tolerance of furlough fraud is likely to be zero and there will no doubt be plenty of whistleblowers willing to spill the beans on employers in the coming months.

Mr Hosking talks to Sarah Wallace, a partner at Constantine Law, who believes this has the makings of a real headache for some companies if HMRC decides to get heavy. The successful prosecution of a high-profile employer would be the best way for HMRC to maximise revenues from companies that have wrongly claimed money, Hosking suggests.

Majority favour tax hikes for the wealthy

A report compiled by Tax Justice UK found that 74% of Brits want to see wealth taxed more with supporters of the move including 64% of Tory voters and 88% of Labour. Robert Palmer, executive director of Tax Justice UK, said: “Brits want fair tax rises to support better public services, tackle inequality and deal with the climate emergency.”

Government sets out plans for new approach to subsidy control

UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma yesterday confirmed that the UK would follow World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules on subsidies and other international commitments after the end of the transition period.

In a press release, the BEIS said: “The WTO rules are an internationally recognised common standard covering financial assistance granted by governments and public authorities to companies. Unlike EU member states, most advanced economies do not have substantive rules regulating subsidies beyond those set by the WTO.”

In a statement to MPs, Mr Sharma insisted the change would not mean a return to the 1970s policy of picking winners or bailing out losers.

Rather the UK needed “a modern system for supporting businesses to grow” and to “maintain the flexibility to support the UK’s strategic interests”. Sharma added that a detailed plan for a post-Brexit state aid regime would not be published until next year, prompting anger in Brussels.

Covid-19 general news

Global cases hit 27.4 million with 292,991 new cases on the 9th and deaths rise to 904,103.

All social gatherings of more than six people will be banned in England from Monday 14th September, under new limits announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday, as covid-19 cases grow. Police have new powers to disperse and fine £100 any group larger than 6. Previously it was 30. There will be exceptions for people grouping for work, weddings and funerals, and for organized sports, but parties in pubs and restaurants, and gatherings in public spaces will all be hit by the new limits. Boris Johnson said at PM Question Time that he expects “everyone in this country to obey the law” in relation to the new crowd restrictions.

Frontrunners in the race for a Covid-19 vaccine and the US FDA pledged to avoid shortcuts on science as they face pressure to rush a shot to market. In an unusual public letter, the companies agreed to submit the vaccines for clearance only when they’re shown to be safe and effective in large clinical studies.

A new study from Iceland found that of 1200 who had recovered from Covid, 90% still tested positive for antibodies 4 months after recovering. Those who had been hospitalised had higher levels. A seperate study by the Medical Research Council in the UK found that severely ill covid-19 patients also developed higher levels of T-cells with T-cells that could identify 8 separate parts of the virus, including the spike protein that allows it to penetrate human cells

India reported 95,735 new cases.

Europe’s fears of a virus resurgence are becoming reality with France’s health minister calling the surge in infections “worrisome with over 6000 new cases.

Malaysia has banned UK citizens from entering the country.

Coronavirus lingering on chilled salmon may be infectious for more than a week, according to researchers in China, where imported fish have been investigated as a potential source of infections. Although I am chilled, this doesn’t apply to the compiler of this blog.

President Donald Trump was directly quoted (and recorded) telling a reporter in March that the coronavirus was “deadly stuff” and much worse than the flu, and that he deliberately understated its danger during the initial outbreak of the pandemic.


The FTSe rose 1.4% yesterday and the pound strengthened to $1.30 while falling to 1.10 Euros

Overnight, the S&P 500 rose 2.01%. while the NASDAQ rose 2.71%, clawing back some of the recent losses. Asian markets were mostly stronger. Apple noticable gained 4% to take it back to a $2 trillion market cap.

In response to new social gathering limitations, JD Wetherspoon fell 99p to 952p in late trading whilst Whitbread also suffered down 87p per share.

Bank of England Deputy Governor Sam Woods said the UK will maintain financial standards above those required by international law after the transition period ends on the 31st December 2020.

House prices

London House Prices have stabilised with activity continuing to rise, as buyers take advantage of the stamp duty holiday. The August Rics residential survey found 28% of respondents noted an increase in buyer interest across the capital. Buyer enquiries continued to rise while the number of new properties listed for sale also increased.

Forecasters say no-deal Brexit now more likely

City analysts have said the probability of a no-deal Brexit has increased following the publication of the UK Government’s Internal Market Bill. Fitch now expects the UK and the EU to trade on WTO terms from January 1st and has taken 2% of forecast for next year. Mujtaba Rahman of the Eurasia Group consultancy now puts the likelihood of no-deal at 60%, up from his previous 40% prediction while Kallum Pickering, senior economist at Berenberg, commented: “It suggests the UK is trying to increase the pressure to get a deal more to its liking rather than going for a hard exit. Either way, the strategy does not raise the chance of a good outcome.”

Brexit negotiations have restarted in London between the EU’s Michel Barnier and David Frost. The EU has warned that a breach of the withdrawal agreement would undermine trust said Ursula van der Leyen EU Commission head. The NI Secretary Brandon Lewis admitted changes in the Internal Market Bill would breach international law.

Without an agreement,  trade could be thrown into chaos at the beginning of the year as WTi rules applied, but some say the “game of Brexit chicken” may be part of the negotiating strategy.

Adding to the turmoil, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said any potential U.S.-U.K. trade deal would not pass Congress if Britain undermines the Good Friday peace agreement.

More companies are calculating their ethnicity pay gap

The number of companies calculating their ethnicity pay gap has grown “significantly” in the past two years, according to a new report from PwC, which said firms should be harnessing such data to help improve workplace diversity. A survey of more than 100 businesses by the firm found that the percentage of firms now collecting ethnicity data on their staff has increased to 67% from 53% in 2018. The percentage of those calculating their ethnicity pay gap in 2020 has risen from 5% in 2018 to 23%in 2020, and 40% of the organisations that have calculated their gap have already published it voluntarily. Katy Bennett, director in PwC’s HR consulting practice, said: “It’s very encouraging to see so many more companies taking action to collect, analyse and publish their ethnicity pay gap data.” She added: “Ultimately, the key is the insight that this data provides into where change is most needed. By measuring inclusion as well as diversity, organisations can gain a holistic understanding of where improvements can best be made.”

New Look faces administration risk if restructuring blocked

New Look warns it will have to consider “less favourable alternatives” if unsecured creditors do not support its latest restructuring plan, potentially putting around 11,000 jobs at risk. Last month, the group launched a second major restructuring of its store estate in three years, asking landlords to agree new turnover-based leases at 402 stores to help it through the COVID crisis. A recapitalisation that would reduce senior debt from about £550m to £100m can only be delivered if the firm secures the support of its landlords for a CVA at a vote on September 15th. New Look has been criticised by the British Property Federation (BPF) over alleged inaccuracies in how it has presented the restructuring plan. “New Look and Deloitte have launched this CVA with reference in their communications that the BPF’s views are reflected in the proposal – this is not true,” chief executive Melanie Leech said.

Bank branch staff stopped £19m of fraud in first half of 2020

The Banking Protocol that enables bank branch staff to alert their local police force when they suspect a customer is being scammed has prevented victims from losing £116m from fraud and led to 744 arrests since it was introduced three years ago. Just in the first six months of 2020, £19.3m of fraud was prevented and more than 100 arrests were made through the scheme, according to figures from UK Finance. A range of scams that trick elderly and vulnerable customers into withdrawing cash from their branch were prevented, including courier scams, romance fraud and rogue traders. Katy Worobec, managing director of economic crime at UK Finance, said: “It is sickening that criminals are preying on elderly and vulnerable victims during this difficult time. Bank branch staff on the frontline are doing a heroic job in stopping these cruel scams and helping bring those responsible to justice.

£2tn ‘at risk from pension tricksters’

More than £2tn of pension cash is at risk of scams, according to a report from The Police Foundation think-tank, which calls for urgent action to better protect investors.

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

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See all our latest news here!

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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