Construction businesses building smaller savings pots

Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) within the construction and building sector come bottom when it comes to the amount of money held in business savings accounts, with the average balance standing at £319,000, according to new research from specialist challenger bank Hampshire Trust Bank. Accountancy SMEs, which hold an average of just over £1 million in savings (£1,085,000), are the biggest business savers.

While accountancy and IT and communications businesses have the largest savings pots, charities are the most active savers – investing 77 per cent of total funds in business savings. The national average for business savings is £556,000 – 57 per cent of a SME’s total funds.

Following the outcome of the EU Referendum, half (50 per cent) of businesses in the construction and building industry said they were increasing the amount of cash in their firms to build a cash buffer, significantly higher than the national average of 38 per cent.

However, only 4 per cent of construction SMEs said they were increasing cash reserves due to concerns about the UK economic outlook – lower than the national average of 12 per cent.

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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 earnt. 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.”