More businesses thriving by 2005

Link: More SMEs going under in 2003

The latest BDO Stoy Hayward Industry Watch said the overall proportion of firms failing was expected to drop to 1% for 2004 and 2005.

It predicted a small bump on the otherwise smooth trajectory of better business survival, with a rise in the number of failures in the first quarter of this year.

In 2002 19,930 businesses went bust. Last year the figure was down to 17,450 and will fall further to 17,030 and 16,390 this year and in 2005 respectively, according to BDO.

Shay Bannon, business recovery services partner at BDO, said: ‘The uneven growth that has dogged the UK economy has been replaced by stability. This is positive news for British business, but companies must not get carried away. The economy is still vulnerable to external shocks.’

But the survey contained bad news for the leisure industry, which is likely to see an increase in business failures from 0.6% in 2003 to 0.7% in 2004.

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