Rise in number of smaller firms closing in Britain

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LONDON: The number of smaller firms going into liquidation has increased by almost a third so far in 2018. Figures for the first nine months of the year showed a 32% rise,  with 679 companies affected, compared to 513 in the same period of 2017.

Blair Nimmo

Blair Nimmo, of professional services firm KPMG, said “local challenges”, such as the fires in Sauchiehall Street in Glasgow – had a “negative impact on smaller traders”.
The rise in liquidations meant there was an increase in company insolvencies, which went from 581 in the first nine months of 2017 to 721 over January to September 2018. The figures from KPMG also showed the number of large businesses failing in Scotland fell by nearly two-fifths.
There were 42 companies that went into administration in the first nine months of 2018, 38% less than the 68 recorded in the same period the previous year.KPMG said this showed a “positive environment” for larger firms in Scotland.
Mr Nimmo, the head of restructuring for KPMG in the UK, said there had been 57 administrations in the last 12 months – the lowest since the firm’s records began in 2006, before the last recession.
“Business confidence in Scotland is among the highest in the UK with large businesses in particular demonstrating resilience in the face of stalling Brexit negotiations and wider political uncertainty,” he said.
“UK headlines have been dominated by challenges in the retail and casual dining sectors but there are positive signs of growth in Scotland in sectors such as tourism and financial services.