By Sam Griffiths on Tuesday 3 February 2015
The first month of 2015 has proven to be a good one in terms of origination volumes for the UK Alternative Finance sector with several industry records being broken.
January’s £159.5m total origination figure for the Liberum AltFi Volume Index tops the previous record, set just last month, by £2.5m. This is a 71% increase on last January’s volume. The record volume was driven by the P2P lenders, more specifically the consumer focused lenders. These predominantly consumer lending platforms eclipsed their previous record month of £60.1m (from October 2014) by a whopping £16m or 27% with RateSetter, Zopa and recent entrant FundingSecure all notching up platform best months. In the process, RateSetter also regained the UK industry record for largest origination in a single month, lending £43.5m and smashing the previous record by some £8.4m.
So why the record breaking month for consumer lending platforms? Obviously the entire industry is growing rapidly and therefore one expects records to be broken, but this is an outlandishly large jump. Perhaps the consumer lenders are capitalizing on consumers trying to pay off credit card bills after a very merry Christmas?!
In contrast, the SME focused platforms had a quieter month with the sector’s £66.5m of origination being some 18% off the record that was set last November. Clearly the Christmas break and holiday season has meant that loan applications from businesses have been sluggish.