Feeds

Mandy flies flag for small biz bailout

Good money after bad

The next step in data security

On the day the British Chamber of Commerce described economic figures for the fourth quarter as "truly awful... unprecedented... no positive features", Lord Mandelson's Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform was busy leaking plans for a £20bn guarantee for small business loans in another attempt to free up credit for businesses.

We're sure the original bank bailout was supposed to guarantee just that kind of lending, but hey, we're not highly-paid economists.

The scheme would guarantee loans, for a fee, made by banks to businesses with less than 50 employees. Of course this would lumber taxpayers with even greater levels of debt should a large number of these firms fail or otherwise default on their debt. Digger maker JCB blamed the difficulty its customers were having in getting credit for job cuts it announced today.

The BCC's fourth quarter economic survey of 6,000 businesses was the worst since it started doing the research in 1989. The BCC said: "There are no positive features in the Q4 results. Domestic demand is plunging, exports are falling, and confidence is plummeting. All the critical national balances have worsened in Q4, for both manufacturing and services, and all are in negative territory."

The BCC said it was clear the UK is facing a serious recession and the downturn is deepening. It called for a national recovery plan to get the economy moving again. None of this sounds to us like good reason for banks to start lending money to businesses again.

Berr had nothing more to say on the apparent loan deal, but predicted more news later this week.

The Tory Party claimed Mandy was pinching its ideas, but that it would blow £50bn on the bailout.

The LibDems however condemned the move as another example of the taxpayer taking all the risks for bankers with no reward.

Vince Cable, LibDems' shadow chancellor, said: "The simple and obvious issue which has to be raised is why the partially-nationalised banks are not being required by the Government to maintain the flows of lending... the Government seems to lack the bottle to break the banks' lending strike. It finds it much easier to use taxpayer-financed guarantees than to get tough on the taxpayers' behalf."

Cable called for full government control of the partly-nationalised banks.

Forrester Research predicts spending on IT kit and services will fall three per cent this year in US dollar terms. It reckons software sales will do slightly better than other categories - they will stay the same as in 2008. ®

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.