There is an extensive market for what might be called commercial lending, ie loans to businesses of all sizes, from sole traders and partnerships to family companies to multinational traders. Loans may be required to start up or expand businesses, to purchase shops, factories or hotels, or to refurbish premises. All the high street retail banks have departments operating in this field, and there is also a wide range of companies that specialise in commercial lending. Such lending is normally secured on the company’s property or other assets, with the interest rate set at a specified margin above the lender’s base rate. The exact interest rate will depend on the risk that the lender believes is involved in lending to the particular company; this will be assessed by looking at the company’s past performance (where applicable), business plans, projected profits and management quality, as well as the business sector in which it operates.