UK: businesses upbeat despite 2021 economic challenges

Payment Practices Barometer

  • United Kingdom
  • Agriculture,
  • Construction,
  • Consumer Durables,
  • Electronics/ICT,
  • Food,
  • Services

25th November 2020

Late payments have surged by more than 80% in the UK following the onset of the pandemic and the subsequent recession

Introduction

A further complication concerns ongoing uncertainty connected to Brexit. Yet despite such negative indicators, around half of the respondents to the Payment Practices Barometer  survey were upbeat in their outlook towards both the domestic and global economies. This could in part be related to the fiscal measures put in place by the Government to support businesses during the pandemic.

In addition, this year’s Payment Practices Barometer survey has revealed some interesting trends and opinions among the businesses we spoke to. Benchmarking the results against last year, it is apparent that many businesses in the UK adapted their approach to credit in order to increase their competitiveness within an increasingly difficult market.

Key takeaways from the report

  • Nearly 60% of the total value of B2B sales in the UK currently employ trade credit, slightly higher than the 55% average for Western Europe overall.
  • The results of this year’s survey show a sharp change in direction, as businesses radically lengthen payment terms in response to pandemic
  • Late payments increase by an astonishing 81% compared to pre-pandemic levels
  • More businesses in UK offer discounts for early payment on invoices than region as a whole
  • 55% of UK respondents expect the domestic economy to improve in 2021. 50% believe customer creditworthiness will improve and 51% expect international trade to grow next year.

Interested in getting to know more?

For a complete overview of the corporate payment behaviour in the United Kingdom during the COVID-19 pandemic and global recession, please download the complete report. The report gives also insight into the impact of the pandemic-induced economic crisis on the following industries in the country:

  • Agri-food
  • Construction
  • Consumer durables
  • ICT/electronics
  • Business services

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