Report of a study that aims to assess, and quantify, the impacts of the financial crisis and subsequent global economic recession on the growth and performance of UK SME employers. Analyses existing data from two previous survey sources on SME employers in the pre-recession and recessionary periods. Considers how the problems in the banking sector have affected the supply of finance to the SME sector, and whether this has depressed business performance and investment. Looks at the impact of the recession has been more serious for particular types of entrepreneurs and businesses. Aims to support future policy development to support the SME sector in periods of economic instability. Underlying data for this publication is also available in a machine processable format on the Transparency/Report Data webpage.