Half of Covid loan cash unused – business news 15 December 2020.

James Salmon, Operations Director.

Half of Covid loan cash unused, unemployment, lenders urge caution over negative rates, the trade deal, warning from industrialists, London,  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.

Half of Covid loan cash unused

As much as £21bn of taxpayer-backed covid loan cash is sitting unused in firms’ bank accounts, bankers have revealed, with senior executives telling MPs that around half of the £42bn handed out under the Government’s Bounce Back Loan scheme for small companies is being held onto.

Paul Thwaite, commercial banking chief at NatWest, told the Treasury Select Committee: “I think that demonstrates … that some customers have exercised caution, drawn down on the lending and kept it for future spending.”

Amanda Murphy, HSBC’s head of commercial banking, said that for many SMEs, “these loans provided a very important lifeline, enabled them to pay their bills… and prevented them from going into financial difficulty.”

Suggesting that further support will be needed when loan applications close in January, Starling Bank CEO Anne Boden said: “The pandemic doesn’t end when these schemes finish.”


Unemployment rose in the three months through October, exposing the brutal impact of covid-19 on the economy. The figures have added to criticism that Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak acted too late when he expanded programs to support jobs and businesses.

The number of people looking for work jumped climbed by 241,000 in the period, taking the jobless rate to 4.9%, the highest since 2016, the Office for National Statistics said Tuesday.

Lenders urge caution over negative rates

Finance bosses have urged the Bank of England (BoE) to move with caution as it considers taking interest rates negative for the first time, with Amanda Murphy, head of commercial banking at HSBC, telling the Commons Treasury Select Committee that the Bank “does have to carefully consider whether negative interest rates have the desired outcomes”. Pointing to countries that have made the move, she added that they “haven’t seen inflation rise and the growth hasn’t come back as strongly as one might have hoped.”

EU trade deal

Negotiators for the UK and EU have restarted talks over a post-Brexit trade deal as they search for a breakthrough in securing an agreement. It comes after the two sides decided on Sunday there had been enough progress for negotiations to continue. Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, said that a “narrow path” to an agreement was now possible. The main sticking-points continue to be fishing rights and a regulatory “level playing-field” for competition.

Industrialist warns Brexit will be like a ‘slow puncture’

Juergen Maier, the former CEO of electronics firm Siemens, has warned that Brexit will hit the British economy like a “slow puncture”, with disruption to business to last well into 2021 even if a trade deal is agreed. He believes it is “going to be a pretty tough for the first six months”, adding that “those who think a deal is going to miraculously resolve the situation” are wrong. Mr Maier said the impact on the economy will be like “a slow puncture” and there will be “a slow burn” as firms gradually move bits of their production or parts of their research and development abroad. He has urged ministers to offer an “adjustment period” to allow businesses to get accustomed to new customs and standards red tape that Brexit will bring.

London to lead on jobs growth amid lopsided recovery

Analysis by EY suggests that London and the South East are the only regions in England expected to see jobs growth by 2023. The capital is expected to add almost 80,000 jobs by 2023, with the South East adding 28,000 jobs over the period. Employment is set to fall in all other regions, led by Yorkshire and the Humber, which is predicted to lose 49,000 jobs. Rohan Malik, EY’s government and infrastructure partner, said: “The economy faces a lopsided recovery which risks setting back the UK’s levelling up agenda unless concerted action is taken.” The firm’s chief economist Mark Gregory said manufacturing “will be key to the levelling up agenda”, noting that an estimated 86% of manufacturing activity is located in towns or smaller cities outside the South East.

UK is ‘sleepwalking into unemployment crisis’

Lord Forsyth, chair of the House of Lords economic affairs committee, has warned that the UK is “sleepwalking into an unemployment crisis”, arguing that efforts to support the labour market amid the coronavirus crisis are falling short. This comes as the committee releases its Time for a New Deal report which calls on the Government to invest in job creation and move away from wage subsidies. Lord Forsyth, who said the report seeks to “save the prospects of a generation of young people”, says that the coronavirus vaccine does not mean the economy will no longer need support. “Sectors with jobs that historically lead labour market recoveries – hospitality, retail and leisure – have been flattened”, he noted. Adding that these sectors are “likely to be in a worse state” when wage support ends, he warned that unemployment will spike.

Bank of Mum and Dad risks landing children with tax bill

Legal experts are warning that growing reliance on the Bank of Mum and Dad is leaving their children in danger of landing with a hefty tax bill. Cash gifts could leave the recipients with a large bill because of inheritance tax, which is payable for up to seven years after the money changes hands. Law firm Lindsays has seen a rise in the number of cases it is dealing with where people risk being stung with an unexpected inheritance tax bill because they and their parents were unaware of the implications of what they thought was a gift.

Covid-19 general news

There were 20,263 new cases (total 1.87m) in the UK yesterday as numbers continued to tick up with 232 more deaths, bringing the total to 64,402.

Globally 524,320 new cases brought the total  to 72.8 million with 1,622,655 deaths.

London will move into England’s highest tier of covid restrictions from 00:01 GMT on Wednesday, MPs have been told. Parts of Essex and Hertfordshire are also reported to be entering tier three. The tier three restrictions would see pubs and restaurants closed except for takeaway and delivery services.

U.K. authorities warned a “new variant” of the disease may be driving a rapid rise in cases. The World Health Organization is aware of the genetic variant of the virus identified in about 1,000 individuals in the U.K., Executive Director Michael Ryan said during a press briefing on Monday. “This virus evolves and changes over time, and we’ve seen different variants emerge,” Ryan said. “The question is whether there is significance in public health terms,” since mutations of the virus are “quite common.” As of yet there is no evidence that the new strain is resistant to vaccines or detection, or that it worsens the impact of the infection.

Germany is also starting a hard lock-down tomorrow. Italy are considering further restrictions as are the Dutch.


Yesterday the FTSE 100 closed down 0.23% at 6531.83 and the 250 Closed up 0.7% as stocks reacted to the Pound.  Sterling is at 1.096 Euros and 1.333 US Dollars.

Overnight in the US, the DOW dropped -0.62%, the S&P 500 dropped -0.44% and the NASDAQ rose 0.50%  as fears of additional Covid-19 restrictions offset the optimism around a vaccine rollout.

Asian Markets pulled back from multi-week highs on Tuesday as rising COVID-19 infections and lock-downs overshadowed strong industrial output data from China.

Oil Prices pushed settled around $50 a barrel, buoyed by hopes that a rollout of vaccines will lift global fuel demand while a tanker explosion in Saudi Arabia jangled investors nerves

Gold Prices edged lower to $1828 as the rollout of a COVID-19 vaccine in the US drove optimism in wider financial markets with investors banking on a resultant economic recovery.

London property bell weather

Shaftesbury laid out the economic damage being done to London’s West End entertainment district by Covid-19. As the capital and parts of Essex and Hertfordshire prepared to go into Tier 3 restrictions from Wednesday, following “very sharp, exponential rises” in cases, Shaftesbury said the pandemic has had a significant impact on its performance in the financial year that ended September 30, though it was seeing the “first positive signs” for the new year.

Asking prices dip in December

Figures from Rightmove show that asking prices for UK homes have fallen for the second month in a row, slipping by an average of £2,080 since last month. In December the average asking price was £319,945, down 0.6% on November. This follows a 0.5% dip recorded between October and November. The decline has been attributed in part to sellers dropping prices as they seek to entice buyers looking to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday before it ends on March 31. Scotland and Wales have seen the biggest dip in asking prices since last month. In Scotland the average asking price is £162,116, down 2.1% on last month, while in Wales it’s £210,943, a drop of 1.9%. The analysis shows that homes at the top end of the market have seen asking prices decline 1.4% since November, while first-time buyer homes are down 0.1%. Year-on-year, the average asking price is up 6.6% on December 2019.

France seizes Ghosn’s assets

French tax authorities have seized €13m of property and other assets from Carlos Ghosn, with the fugitive former Renault-Nissan chief suspected of having evaded French taxes by claiming that he was domiciled in Amsterdam from 2012 until his 2018 arrest in Japan on charges of tax fraud.

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 nsm@cpa.co.uk 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.

You put up with the PAIN – now claim the GAIN!

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.

Did you know that your business is entitled to a minimum of £40 for every commercial invoice paid late to you over the past 6 years?

How many of your invoices are paid late each month – 20, 50, 100 or more?

At £40 per invoice that’s claim of £57,600, £144,000, £288,000 plus interest. The more invoices the bigger the claim! 

At £100 per invoice it’s £144,000, £360,000, £720,000 plus interest.

Discover NOW the potential value of late payment compensation hidden in your sales ledger!

For over 20 years, CPA has calculated and recovered Late Payment Compensation on behalf of Clients!  

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

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

Discover NOW the potential value of late payment compensation hidden in your sales ledger!

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 extra 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.