Fewer businesses have gone to the wall in 2004 than in any of the previous six years.
The latest BDO Stoy Hayward Industry Watch research reveals an 8 per cent fall in the number of companies going out of business from last year’s figure of 17,550.
This brings the number of failures for 2004 down to 16,150, equivalent to an average of 310 businesses per week.
A soft landing for the economy is expected in 2005, although faltering consumer spending combined with an uncertain global economic outlook will dent business optimism, BDO said.
The research predicts a slight increase in the number of businesses that will fail next year, but still well below failure rates recorded in recent years.