Two thirds of business owners believe that the new National Loan Guarantee Scheme will not benefit the UK’s smallest companies, research by BusinessZone.co.uk and AccountingWEB.co.uk shows.
In a snap poll of the 150 people who took part in a live blog of George Osborne's Autumn Statement on the two online communities, 64% predicted that the 'S' part of 'SME' will not be able to access funding through the government’s new credit easing efforts.
The remaining 36% believed they will benefit.
Confirmed in the Autumn Statement, the new scheme will see up to £40bn in loans underwrited by the government meaning that banks can offer them to business customers at a lower interest rates.
Commenting on the findings, Dan Martin, editor of BusinessZone.co.uk, said: "As the National Loan Guarantee Scheme applies to companies with a turnover of up to £50m, it’s perhaps not surprising that most entrepreneurs are sceptical about the benefits.
"Given the state of the economy and the fact that small businesses are crucial to its recovery, it’s vital that the measures that the government says are for the benefit of start-ups and small businesses really are for the benefit of start-ups and small businesses.
"Saying that you're going to open up £40bn of bank loans to companies makes for a good headline but it will mean nothing if the companies that need it most don’t get access."