Retail SMEs are among top UK savers

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the retail sector are the third most active savers in the UK.

Retailers manage to keep on average 68 per cent of their total funds in savings accounts, according to new research from the Hampshire Trust Bank. The top savers, it revealed, were charities (77 per cent) and architects (69 per cent).

Following the result of the EU referendum, a quarter of businesses within the retail sector said they were increasing the amount of cash in their firms to build a cash buffer. This was lower than the national average of 38 per cent, however.

More than one-in-10 (12 per cent) retail SMEs said they were increasing cash reserves due to concerns about the UK economic outlook, which was on par with the national average.

Interestingly, financial services business also lagged behind the national average with just 56 per cent committed into savings.

Stuart Hulme, director of savings at Hampshire Trust Bank, said: “Our study demonstrates the sector differences when it comes to the amounts businesses and organisations are holding in current and savings accounts. It’s encouraging to see charities and architects are confidently planning for their future, by placing the majority of their total funds into savings accounts.

“The organisations that have been stockpiling cash into current accounts should consider the opportunities to make more out of every £1 earned. At Hampshire Trust Bank, we continue to identify ways to meet the savings needs of SMEs – the engine room of the UK economy. The benefit of making use of savings accounts is not only the interest rate return you get as a business, but also the knowledge that the money is being lent on to SMEs looking to grow, delivering double value and supporting investment in the UK.”