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New figures released by the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) show that total asset finance new business (primarily leasing and hire purchase) grew in May 2023 by 13% compared with the same month in 2022. In the five months to May 2023, new business was also 13% higher than in the same period in 2022.

The business new car finance and commercial vehicle finance sectors reported new business up in May by 60% and 7% respectively, compared with the same month in 2022. The plant and machinery finance sector reported a fall in new business of 10% over the same period.

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Commenting on the figures, Geraldine Kilkelly, Director of Research and Chief Economist at the FLA, said: “The asset finance market reported a thirteenth consecutive month of growth in May as the trends of higher average advances across asset finance sectors and strong performances by the vehicle finance sectors continued. Lending to larger businesses was up by a third in May, and to SMEs grew by 4% in line with the previous month.

“The industry is also cautiously optimistic about prospects for future growth, with the FLA’s Q2 2023 Industry Outlook Survey showing that almost three-quarters of asset finance respondents anticipate some increase in new business over the next year.”

By Lisa Laverick

Source: Asset Finance International

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