Ipswich ‘has third highest level of SME debt in the UK’

The Bank of England in London.
Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA

The Bank of England in London. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA - Credit: PA

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Ipswich have one of the highest levels of borrowing in the UK, according to a new study.

But the overall indebtedness of SMEs across the East of England as a whole is the lowest in the country, data compiled by company formation specialist Turner Little suggests.

Ipswich is said to have the third highest level of debt per business among the UK’s leading cities and towns, at £233,171. This puts it behind only top placed Exeter (£357,770) and Gloucester (£296,110) and just ahead of Norwich (£229,074) in fourth.

However, the average per business for the East of England (£22,472) is the lowest of all UK regions and nations, with Northern Ireland (£98,192) the highest.

Turner Little says it was prompted to investigate the level of business borrowing following a recent warning from the Bank of England on the level of consumer debt.

However, some forms of business borrowing can be seen as a positive indicator of firms’ confidence to invest.


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The lowest levels of debt per business were found in Sutton (£18,825), followed by Wigan (£21,812), Sunderland (£24,576) and Luton (£27,391).

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