It is nine years since peer-to-peer lending was first mentioned by MPs in parliament, research reveals.
A new online tool, Parli-n-grams, searches records of parliamentary debates to show when a certain phrase was first mentioned.
Analysis by Peer2Peer Finance News shows P2P lending was first said in the Houses of Parliament by Conservative MP Richard Fuller during a debate on economic growth and employment.
He urged the government to work on idea for credit that helps all sizes of businesses and suggested considering a recently-launched P2P lender called Funding Circle.
“For the first time, can we consider P2P lending organisations such as Funding Circle, which provides an alternative way of raising funds for small businesses?” he said.
“It is not enough to come forward with another policy that relies on the banks doing something tomorrow that they are not doing today.”
Read more: Funding Circle plc, two years on
Funding Circle had also been previously mentioned by Tory MP Sam Gyimah in November in November 2010, just months after its launch in a debate addressing access to finance issues and a lack of bank support.
“It is great to see new small businesses trying to step into the breach,” he said.
“I came across a business called Funding Circle, which encourages lending by private individuals to small businesses, but that is nowhere near enough compared with what the big banks can do.”
The world’s oldest P2P lender Zopa was first explicitly mentioned in 2005 by then Tory shadow education minister Charles Hendry during a debate on the consumer credit bill.
“Many new ideas are emerging in the field of lending and borrowing at present, such as the work being undertaken by companies such as Zopa, which is using the internet in a manner that totally changes the way in which people borrow and lend money.”
The phrase P2P lending has since been mentioned more than 200 times during parliamentary debates and through written questions and answers.
Hopefully there will be hundreds more positive mentions in the next nine years as the sector grows.
Read more: P2P industry celebrates 15th birthday