Confidence in business growth remains steadfast for brokers in 2016
Despite uncertainty in the post-Referendum market, almost two in five brokers (38%) feel fairly confident about their business growth for the latter part of 2016. This is according to Shawbrook Bank’s Broker Barometer*. The confidence in this growth is due to a strong start to the year, with 64% of brokers seeing an increase in business volumes and over two fifths (43%) dealing with growing client demand, compared with the second half of 2015.
On top of this, over a third (34%) of brokers are fairly confident in the UK economy post-Referendum, despite fears regarding uncertainty in the markets. Although the number of brokers feeling confident is nearly identical to those who are concerned, the trend has shifted post-Brexit with a larger proportion of brokers now more cautious than they were previously.
According to brokers, the economic climate post-Brexit is seen to be the biggest challenge in the latter half of 2016, with over half (51%) of brokers citing the current economic environment as challenging. Just under a third (30%) believe the biggest consequence following the Referendum result would be a fall in property prices and almost a quarter (23%) expressed fears over a fall in investor demand.
However, despite some fears around the potential impact on borrowers from Brexit, broker sentiment remains bullish. Over half (53%) of brokers are fairly confident with regard to the post-Referendum lending environment during the latter half of 2016, compared to just 25% who are fairly concerned and 0% opting for very concerned. This is suggestive of a strong level of confidence in the UK mortgage market and its ability to weather any Brexit speedbumps.
Karen Bennett, managing director, commercial mortgages commented:
“With the implications of Brexit still unclear, it is understandable that brokers may feel a little nervous about the market. However it is encouraging to see a positive outlook in the main – particularly where client demand is concerned – and in spite of the challenges faced there is still much in the way of opportunity. From a Shawbrook perspective, we are confident that those brokers and investors with a long term balanced strategy will continue to prosper as we move into a more settled environment, and we look forward to supporting them throughout the remainder of 2016.”