Figures find more city businesses in distress

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CITY businesses saw an increase in financial distress across the majority of sectors in the first three months of 2017, new figures have shown.

Data released by business recovery specialists Begbies Traynor found that in the south east, 55,090 firms were in ‘significant’ financial distress during the first three months of this year – up seven per cent on the previous quarter (51,498 firms).

Begbies Traynor’s Red Flag Alert research for the first three months of 2017, monitoring the financial health of UK companies, shows that in Portsmouth 526 businesses reported ‘significant’ financial distress in the same period, compared to 501 in the last three months of 2016 - an increase of five per cent.

Nationally 296,054 businesses were experiencing ‘significant’ financial distress in the first three months of 2017, an increase of seven per cent on the previous quarter (276,518 businesses), and an increase of eight per cent on the same period last year.

Julie Palmer, regional managing partner at Begbies Traynor’s Portsmouth office, said: ‘Given the scale of the increases in distress during Q1, it would appear that food suppliers, logistics firms and wholesalers are yet to fully pass on rising costs to their customers.

‘But it is only a matter of time before we start to see this coming through, especially given the added pressures associated with the new National Living Wage.’