There are clearly risks in P2P lending, but we're here to help with our candid ratings and views. 4thWay educates and informs you about this type of investing, and alerts you to risks and opportunities.
4thWay in five bullet points
- We provide ratings and comparison of peer-to-peer lending, and other online direct lending providers, specialist research put into plain words, with the sole focus of helping people with savings to lend more safely and increase your lending returns where possible.
- 4thWay® was founded in 2014 as the world's first ratings and research agency for online lending, such as P2P and marketplace lending.
- We are staunchly independent and provide highly candid opinion, as users and professionals frequently testify.
- We’re bank-risk modelling professionals, experienced investors and investment journalists, with support from a fund manager as well as a credit-specialist and partner of one of the major accountancy firms. We have proven our skills in modelling the risks in peer-to-peer lending.
- We are combatively independent to ensure that the ratings, guidance and tips you get from us are always trustworthy and complete.
What our ratings and research do for lenders
- Help you learn about P2P lending.
- We believe we can help you to earn as much as two-fifths more interest.
- We think we can lower your recession risks by as much as 90%.
- Alert you to rising risks.
“Very useful…Keep up the good work!”
Read many, many testimonials from people like you as well as from professionals and the P2P lending providers themselves. On the same page, you can see scores of 4thWay's appearances in all of the major national newspapers: the Financial Times, the Times, Telegraph, Sun, Mirror, Express, Daily Mail and more.
4thWay PLUS Ratings and Risk Scores
The 4thWay PLUS Ratings are a test of the chances of losing money as a result of bad debts in a severe recession and how long it might take to recover those losses. The risk scores compare the risks to savings accounts at the lowest risk end and the stock market at the higher end. We think our ratings are based on the toughest assessments in the industry, worldwide.
Please read About The 4thWay PLUS Ratings for more.
How we earn money
We earn money from companies listed on 4thWay while taking huge steps that have protected our independence. See the FAQ How do you earn money and how can we trust you?
Meet 4thWay's specialists
Neil Faulkner, MD, Editor and Chief Researcher
Neil Faulkner is recognised as one of the foremost authorities on peer-to-peer lending in the UK. He has been the most quoted independent commentator in the industry in the major national press for many years. (See press history.) Neil has been in the P2P Finance News Power 50 list every year.
An investor since the 1990s, Neil has been working in and around the financial services industry for most of his career, including as a financial and investment spokesperson, as an investment journalist, and as as an editor.
He co-founded 4thWay when he realised that peer-to-peer lending was being sold like safer savings accounts, and that there was little analysis from experienced investors and banking professionals.
Before 4thWay was launched, Neil took a whole year off to interview senior industry figures, risk analysts and credit specialists.
Leigh Baker, Consultant Risk Adviser
Leigh Baker is a senior risk-modelling professional who has improved borrower selection for most major banks, as well as P2P lending companies, such as building risk and credit models for ThinCats and consultancy to Landbay and MarketInvoice.
For nearly 30 years, Leigh has proven his creative data science and mathematical modelling capabilities. He has taken several UK and European companies through the FCA authorisation process successfully.
Leigh substantially upgraded the 4thWay PLUS Ratings and, with the help of a six-person risk-modelling team with 100 years experience between them, is available through 4thWay to unlock new products and services and to improve default rates for P2P lending platforms and institutional investors.
Anonymous, credit specialist
“Anonymous” is a credit specialist and senior partner at one of the major consultancy firms. Since around half his clients are banks – natural competitors to peer-to-peer lenders – his identity is a secret.
Nick Horrocks, Lead Programmer
At 4thWay, Nick has managed the web development team. He has also created powerful tools for 4thWay's analysts that allow them to analyse millions of cells of loan book data, in order to carry out calculations, such as those needed for the 4thWay PLUS Ratings.
Nick Horrocks has extraordinary experience in the start-up space stretching over two decades.
He's managed technology and infrastructure, hired medium-sized virtual teams and managed budgets, reporting directly to the CEO, for several start-up businesses including getfractal.com, ibiditrade.com and hotproperty.co.uk.
Nick launched the first online offering for several large corporates including vogue.co.uk, gqmagazine.com, Debenhams, Top Shop, Top Man, Harrods and Christies Auctioneers. He was also in the top ten out of 450,000 freelance consultants on peopleperhour.com for a long time, and the father of three lovely children.
4thWay's junior researchers
Sergii is a freelance investment researcher who works for a prominent equity fund manager. Sergii is extremely thorough, interested, and interesting, and we feel really lucky to have him in our highly skilled team!
Matthew Howard, researcher and writer
Matt has more than just a keen interest in peer-to-peer lending. He's an analytical thinker who can also write in a way that everyone can understand.
Jane Rey, researcher and writer
Jane is a writer turned analyst who sponged up the industry at an astounding speed, as well as the ethos of 4thWay for providing candid and accurate research.
Cliff D'Arcy, researcher and writer
Cliff is an investment and money journalist with a degree in mathematics. He has has worked for many major publications over several decades, and written a book for the Financial Times.
Meet the rest of our talented team
Marjan is 4thWay's marketing manager. Creative, curious and full of integrity, Marjan fits in well to the 4thWay team.
Web project manager and doubles as head of UK sales. Finalist in Most Popular SCRUM Professional category in the Agile Awards 2015 and having successfully delivered for Which?, national newspapers, and 4thWay.
A very professional financial marketing and PR manager, formerly Head of Global PR at The Motley Fool, who modestly says her main job is to hold Neil's hand when he does BBC interviews, but so long as they only show his face no one will notice. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
We couldn't have done it – and keep doing it – without these others:
Ashok Rao, business and technical consultant. Despite his formidable experience, he says his main role during start-up was to ensure Neil doesn't get carried away with his ideas – but that, while he's had his work cut out for him, Neil's come along nicely and it all worked out in the end!
Barrie, who looks after our relationships with providers in order to help the research and specialist team keep an impartial distance.
Liam Weedon of Fintech Funnels, who helps platforms to understand just how useful our ratings are for them and their lenders.
“For Lenders who may not be familiar with 4thway, they are a P2P Lending Research Agency who rate platforms by reviewing the company, their business model, their staff and the underlying loan book. 4thway really look under the hood, we provide monthly data feeds and participate in regular one on one interviews from CEO to credit team. Proplend has been one of 4thways highest rated Platforms for the past 4 years, something of which we are very proud.
“Whilst you may not be familiar with 4thway, you may have heard of “Defacto”, they also rate financial products, which according to their website ranges from pet insurance to pensions. Interestingly Proplend also scores highly with a 5 star rating which we have held for the past few years.
“The major difference between these two is, no one from Defacto has ever engaged with us and they have never requested any data. Whilst third party oversight is good, it is important for Lenders to understand the depth of the oversight. If you do not already subscribe to 4thways newsletters, I highly recommend them.”
The Proplend Team
For reviews about 4thWay from other industry insiders, and from 4thWay users such as yourself, see testimonials.