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Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are delaying opening business savings accounts as they do not have time, according to research from Hampshire Trust Bank.

When asked what tasks they were most likely to put off, opening a business savings account was the second most popular answer with 19% of the vote. Completing tax forms and legislation materials came top with 29%, while marketing to new clients came third (18%). According to the findings, the top three reasons why SMEs tend to delay tasks are ‘I have better things to do with my time’ (36%), ‘I run out of time’ (31%) and ‘it never seems to be a priority’ (29%).

When those that do have a business savings account were asked how long it took them to open, the majority (30%) said up to an hour and 10% said up to two hours. According to our latest UK SME Savings Tracker research, UK SMES have £409,000 on average in their current accounts, meaning that a savings account paying 1% would generate an extra £4,000 a year.

Business savings are being overlooked altogether by some smaller firms, with 41% stating they do not have an SME savings account. According to the research, the percentage of those without a business savings account rises to 80% for sole traders, decreasing in percentage terms to 18% of medium sized firms (50 – 250 employees).

Stuart Hulme, Director of Savings and Marketing at Hampshire Trust Bank, said: “In today’s busy business world it can be difficult to find time to focus on tasks which may not seem business critical, such as identifying and opening a savings account. However, with savings accounts generally providing a higher rate of return than current accounts, taking time out of your working day can save you money in the long run.”

For more information download our report How SMEs spend their time.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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