Mr. Austin Mitchells
asked the Secretary of State for Industry if he will bring up to date the information provided in the Official Report on 18 March 1980 in response to a written question from the hon. Member for Grimsby concerning bank advances to industry; and if he will provide an estimate of the current position.
§ Mr. David Mitchell
More recent information is not available from the analysis of company accounts on which the answer of 18 March 1980 was based. However, another surce of information on industrial and commercial companies is the national accounts, though they do not provide separate figures for manufacturing. Figures of bank and other borrowing, from 1975 to the second quarter of 1980, can be found in table 9.2 of the October edition of Financial Statistics, page 111.
It must be remembered that there are differences in coverage and definition between the national accounts and the company accounts series. In particular, it would be inappropriate to attempt to deduce the financial experience of small companies by comparing the two series.