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Peer2Peer Finance News | December 17, 2017

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Could this platform satiate investor appetite for manual lending?

Could this platform satiate investor appetite for manual lending?
Marc Shoffman

LENDINGCROWD has been ranked as an alternative to Funding Circle for investors looking to continue with manual lending, as they both offer similar interest rates and borrower profiles.

Peer-to-peer analyst Orca said that before Funding Circle shifted to manual lending last month, 27 per cent of investors used the manual option, suggesting there is demand for this functionality.

Iain Niblock, chief executive of Orca, said there are plenty of parallels between LendingCrowd and Funding Circle that advocates of manual lending could benefit from.

While Funding Circle counts the state-backed British Business Bank as a lender, Scottish Enterprise has funded loans through LendingCrowd’s platform.

The size of loans and the rates of interest paid to investors are also similar on both platforms, Orca said.

The average loan size on LendingCrowd so far this year has been £89,598, compared with £70,775 on Funding Circle, while in 2016 it was £78,783 and £74,087 respectively.

Read more: How do you invest yours? The P2P platforms offering auto-bid or manual lending

LendingCrowd paid 10.37 per cent interest to investors last year, compared with 9.57 per cent on Funding Circle.

“The size of the LendingCrowd loan book is modest but is growing rapidly,” Niblock said.

“As with any P2P investment, investors can mitigate the risk a particular platform presents by diversifying across a number of P2P platforms as well as a large number of borrowers.

“There are strong parallels between both the operations and borrower types of both LendingCrowd and Funding Circle. For investors who enjoyed manually selecting individual Funding Circle borrowers, LendingCrowd may be an alternative that is worth a look.”

LendingCrowd isn’t the only P2P platform offering a manual lending option.

Lendy and LandlordInvest let their investors choose property loans, offering up to 12 per cent.

Investors can select their own renewable energy projects, earning eight to 12 per cent on Abundance, or can get the best of both with Assetz Capital, which provides business loans with both an auto-bid and manual option.

Read more: Autobid vs manual: Which is truly P2P?