Missing cheques cost smaller traders £550m

One in five owners of smaller businesses forget to pay in cheques at least once a week, missing out on an average of £740, a study shows.

Combined with those owners who lose their cheques never to recover them, it means that enterprises are losing up to £550million a year, found Barclays.

The result from cheques being either lost or forgotten about means an estimated one million smaller traders are not being paid on a regular basis, the bank said.

It also said that, contrary to suggestions that cheques are fast-approaching the history books, the traditional way to pay remains a “popular” method to send and receive money.

To evidence its claim, Barclays pointed out that more than 90million cheques were paid in to its accounts over the last 12 months, with a value in excess of £140billion.

That figure would be even higher if traders weren’t forgetting to deposit cheques they’ve been paid, whether it’s on just one occasion; once a month or, worse, every week.

The study’s authors said: “The £550m lost each year by SMEs losing or forgetting to deposit their cheques highlights the scale of the problem.”


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