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THE Q1 2021 Industry Outlook Survey results released  by the Finance and Leasing Association (FLA) show that the asset finance, consumer finance and motor finance industry see opportunities for growth over the next year despite the heightened uncertainty caused by the latest restrictions to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.

Respondents were divided on the outlook for economic conditions, with 52% expecting some improvement over the next twelve months, while 44% expected conditions to worsen.

However, if the latest UK-wide lockdown and the vaccine rollout are successful in bringing the Covid-19 crisis under control, the majority of respondents expected growth over the next twelve months – almost 70% of respondents expected some increase in new business over that period, with 37% expecting new business to increase by 10% or more.

Geraldine Kilkelly, Head of Research and Chief Economist at the FLA, said: “The results of the Q1 2021 survey reflect the industry’s concerns about the adverse impact of prolonged uncertainty on businesses and households.

“But the results also point to the underlying pre-crisis strength of FLA members which has helped them weather the pandemic so far.  The specialist knowledge of finance providers means the industry is in an ideal position to help drive forward Government initiatives such as levelling-up and net-zero.”