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|19 February, 2019

Barclays launches more than 100 Brexit 'clinics' for small businesses

Barclays said it will invite about 5,000 business customers

The Barclays logo is seen in front of displayed stock graph in this illustration taken June 21, 2017.

The Barclays logo is seen in front of displayed stock graph in this illustration taken June 21, 2017.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

LONDON - Barclays will host more than 100 clinics for small business customers in March to help them to prepare for Britain's exit from the European Union at the end of that month, the bank said on Tuesday.

The lender said about 1,500 of its staff will talk in its branches to businesses attending the events about managing their cashflow, exporting goods, supply chain management and other issues as the March 29 Brexit deadline approaches.

Barclays said it will invite about 5,000 business customers to attend the events in the next few weeks.

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While Britain's banks have so far reported few signs of businesses being unable to repay loans or otherwise struggling as Brexit looms, in recent weeks some have said uncertainty over access to European markets is stifling decision making.

Barclays rival Royal Bank of ScotlandRBS.L on Friday said it faces a possible spike in bad loans from business failures and pressures on its own cost-cutting initiatives. 

The failure so far of Prime Minister Theresa May to secure backing for a Brexit deal with the EU is harming small businesses, "making it impossible for them to plan, hire and invest," chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses Mike Cherry said last week.

(Reporting By Lawrence White; editing by David Evans) ((lawrence.white@thomsonreuters.com; +44 207 542 6137; Reuters Messaging: lawrence.white.thomsonreuters@reuters.net))

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