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Survey on the access to finance of enterprises

The survey on the access to finance of enterprises (SAFE) provides information on the latest developments in the financial situation of enterprises, documents trends in the need for and availability of external financing, and measures firms’ expectations about their selling prices, costs, and employment, as well as about euro area inflation. The survey results are broken down by firm size, sector, country, firm age, financial autonomy and ownership.

The survey is conducted every quarter as of 2024 Q1 (formerly every six month), three quarters by the ECB covering euro area countries (see results below) and once in cooperation with the European Commission covering all EU countries plus some neighbouring countries.

View dates for upcoming releases

Survey results - second quarter of 2024

Financing conditions

Euro area enterprises signalled more positive developments as regards the supply of bank loans, reflected in a small increase in bank loan availability, fewer obstacles to obtaining loans, as well as an improvement in banks’ willingness to lend. Fewer euro area firms reported a tightening of financing conditions in the second quarter of 2024 compared with the first quarter.

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Economic activity

More enterprises reported an increase in turnover over the last three months, and firms were optimistic about developments in the next quarter. Cost pressures remained widespread. A small share of firms in net terms indicated an increase in average hours worked in the second quarter of 2024.

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Firms’ expectations

Firms expected the increase in their selling prices and wages to moderate over the next 12 months. Firms’ inflation expectations continued to decline, and the dispersion also moderated at the one-year horizon.

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For the media

This report presents the main results of the 31st round of the Survey on the Access to Finance of Enterprises (SAFE) in the euro area, conducted between 28 May and 20 June 2024.

Read the press release

Full report

Find out more about the latest survey responses on firms’ financing conditions, economic activity and expectations.

Read the report

Data and methodological information

Find out more about the survey methodology and access the data.

See more

Survey respondents

Every quarter, usually in February, June, September and December, we contact thousands of businesses in Europe to ask what financing conditions they are experiencing and how easily they can access finance.

Verian, a research company, in cooperation with GDCC (Global Data Collection Company), an independent market research firm, carries out this survey on behalf of the ECB and the European Commission. The interviews are conducted over a five-week period mainly by telephone, although respondents may also complete an online questionnaire.

You may have been contacted as a potential respondent. If so, we would greatly appreciate your participation. If you have any questions about the survey, please email us at survey.accesstofinance@ecb.europa.eu.

Official letters from the ECB and European Commission to the SAFE respondents

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