Nearly 44% of small to midsize businesses sought funding over the past year, with traditional bank loans still the most popular option, according to a new survey.

Bibby Financial Services polled financial decision makers at businesses with $5 million to $200 million in annual revenue, finding that the average amount of funding sought was $640,000, with 44% of respondents seeking $1 million or more.

“Despite the popularity of online lending for small businesses, more [businesses] still seek funding from traditional lenders,” Bibby said in a news release.

Asset-based lending was the second most popular funding option, with 23% of respondents having used it over the past year.

The reasons for seeking funding included general expenses and cash flow management (47%), new equipment (42%), and growth strategies (39%). Seventy percent of those polled seek funding once a year or less.

Overall, the respondents are optimistic about growth and performance in 2016, with 43% expecting modest growth, 16% highly positioned for growth, and 14% projecting a slight decline.

Nearly 40% are only somewhat or mildly concerned that increases in interest rates will increase their cost of working capital and 64% doubt higher rates will do much to stimulate the economy.

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