BusinessCompany NewsInsolvencies see worrying growth

Insolvencies see worrying growth

A sudden and dramatic increase in workload for insolvency practitioners has led to speculation in the profession that recession may have started to bite in the UK.

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Some insolvency specialists saw their case load for February increase massively compared with the same time last year, and many others reported a worrying trend of more business failures in the UK.

Research published this week by BDO Stoy Hayward also predicted there would be 70,000 business failures during the next three years.

Nick Hood, partner at insolvency firm Begbies Traynor, said: ‘The recession is well and truly here. The number of new cases was up over 80% year-on-year in February.’ Most of his new cases came from the travel sector, manufacturing and the media.

The majority of insolvency professionals admit there is a recession in certain sectors, and say their business has greatly increased compared with last year. ‘Clearly there are sectoral and geographical sectors in trouble,’ said Kroll Buchler Phillips’ Simon Freakley, who added that his firm was seeing more transatlantic work as a result of the US recession.

Jane Moriaty, business recovery partner at KPMG, said that early indications were of a year-on-year increase in workload. ‘There is a downturn and the mid-market is beginning to feel the pinch. There are consumer confidence worries and a lot of sectors are weak because of the Iraq situation,’ she added.

PricewaterhouseCoopers’s Mike Jervis said insolvencies had risen because there were more smaller firms facing liquidation.

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