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English business insolvency trend

We reported just over a year ago (here) on Euler Hermes' 2006-2007 Insolvency Outlook, which suggested a 3% increase in business insolvencies in 2007.

Their latest report, issued in November 2007, forecasts under the headline
 "United Kingdom - A rise in insolvencies in sight"
an 8% increase in insolvencies in 2008. Interestingly, it relates that increase to GDP growth of 2%.

Three months on, forecasts are for rather lower GDP growth. The Bank of England Inflation Report published on 13 February suggests (here) a decline to well below 2% GDP growth during 2008, particularly when the Governor's introductory remark is taken into account:
"the potential for further falls in asset prices and tightening of credit conditions means that the balance of risks around the central projection is on the downside, particularly over the next eighteen months."

Euler Hermes' previous report (linked here) noted the strong negative correlation between insolvency and GDP growth, and the elasticity - a 1% fall in GDP growth gives a 10% rise in insolvencies.

With the lower GDP growth now forecast by the Bank of England, the prospects are for a somewhat larger increase in insolvencies than Euler Hermes' November forecast of 8%.

PS Does anyone know why there was an anomaly in the q4 2006 administration statistic? From the Insolvency Service figures there appear to be perhaps 700 extra appointments that quarter, mainly in London.

 

 

Date: 19th February, 2008
Author: Chris Laughton

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