UK businesses have seen a 24% rise in annual income growth in the last five years, according to the latest Barclays SME Income Index.
Analysis of the current account levels of Barclays small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) showed that the annual growth rate of business income slowed in 2015, from a high of 8% in 2014, to 4%, but was higher than 2010 levels.
Last year’s annual growth rate of 8% was the highest in 14 years, and with some annual income growth having occurred in 2015, SMEs are projected to continue to experience more growth in 2016.
Encouragingly, growth occurred across all regions for England and Wales in 2015.
The region with highest annual income growth was London (5.2%) followed by the North-West (4.7%), up from fourth position to second.
Rising from eighth to third place is new entrant to the top four, the East Midlands (4.4%).
East England (4%) is in fourth position, falling from third place last year.
Adam Rowse, head of Business Banking at Barclays commented: “2014’s credit income growth rate was exceptionally high and the biggest since the turn of the century so 2015’s growth rate of 4% is still an indicator of a thriving year for UK businesses.
“It is understandable that construction and real estate are the sectors with the biggest annual income growth as the UK property sector continues to boom. It is encouraging to see that all regions saw a rise in annual income growth, with northern and southern regions equally represented in the top four, a positive indicator of the strength of SMEs all over the UK.”