January was a slower month for UK Alternative Finance origination volumes with the constituent platforms of the Liberum AltFi Volume index reporting just over £255m in origination. This is some way below last month’s record origination of £283m but is still the fifth biggest origination month on record and represents a 51% year on year growth for the month.
Taking a closer look at the cause of the drop in industry origination volume, it is obvious that both the peer to peer business lending and online invoice financing segments suffered with the two combined accounting for a £38m drop vs December. As we’ve observed previously, business lending platforms suffer from greater seasonality and the slowdown is likely to be a knock-on from the festive break – lead times between applications being received and money being lent can be a few weeks and businesses are less likely apply for loans over the holiday period.
Conversely the consumer lending segment posted a record month, lending £118m over the course of the month. Zopa, RateSetter, Lending Works and Lendable all recorded new high watermarks for their monthly origination. A result of consumers looking to consolidate their debt after an expensive Christmas, perhaps? We saw a similar pattern in January 2015.
Aside from the consumer lending platforms mentioned above, Landbay was the only other platform to register a record this month. Landbay’s £5.95m lent eclipses its previous best by almost £2.5m and is the 5th consecutive month of volume growth recorded by the platform.