New data from the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) reveals that total asset finance new business was up by 2% in July 2022 on a year-on-year basis.

The asset finance new business data primarily concerns leasing and hire purchases.

The new business between January and July this year was 2% higher than year-ago period.

In the commercial vehicle finance sector, new business rose by 2% during the month under review on year-on-year (YoY) basis.

The new business for plant and machinery was at the same level as the last year.

In contrast, a new business in the business equipment finance sector fell by 22% and in the IT equipment finance space by 37%, during the same period.

FLA director of research and chief economist Geraldine Kilkelly said: “The asset finance market reported further new business growth in July despite an increasingly uncertain economic outlook.

“There were pockets of strong growth as the construction equipment finance sector reported new business up by 10% in July. The new heavy commercial vehicle finance and used commercial vehicle finance sectors also reported strong double-digit growth of 41% and 69% respectively.   

“Asset finance continues to play a crucial role in supporting SMEs to recover following the pandemic, with new finance provided to these businesses increasing by 13% in July.

“As the Government considers ways of helping businesses through the worst inflationary environment since the 1970s, we urge it to ensure that any measures to support business investment do not exclude leasing.”