Business news 15 November 2023

James Salmon, Operations Director.

Insolvencies jump 18% in October. Pay outpaces inflation at fastest rate since 2021. Soaring inflation equivalent to 3p income tax rise. Hunt: ‘Fiscal discipline’ is working.  A British ISA, Sponsorship scheme, AI, Markets & more business news that we thought would interest our members.

Insolvencies jump 18% in October

Data from the Insolvency Service shows that insolvencies were up 18% year-on-year in October, with 2,315 recorded last month.

The report reveals that 82% of October’s insolvencies were creditors’ voluntary liquidations (CVLs), where an insolvent company’s directors choose to wind up the firm, with 256 compulsory liquidations, 146 administrations, 23 company voluntary arrangements and one receivership appointment.

David Kelly, head of insolvency at PwC, commented: “Continuing supply chain pressures, energy costs, inflation and the high cost of debt mean that many corporate balance sheets remain fragile, particularly those of smaller owner-managed companies.”

Corporate insolvencies are on track to hit 25,000 in 2023, surpassing last year’s total of 22,128, according to an analysis by Azets. Matthew Richards, a partner at Azets, said: “Insolvency numbers will probably increase further in 2024, particularly in the hospitality, retail, and leisure sectors if consumers continue to curb their spending to cope with higher mortgage and rent payments.”

John Lamerton, small business author at Big Ideas for Small Businesses said, “Small businesses are dying, and it’s not hard to see why: rising costs, a tough economy and taxes that are higher than ever before. Small firms are dropping like flies, and if we’re not careful, we’ll lose our reputation as a once-famous nation of shopkeepers.”

Alistair Hoyne, CEO at Finanze said, “Company debt is rising and the ability to service it has decreased. Businesses and their owners are still reeling from the impact of Covid. The ‘cheap’ extra money pumped in by the Government to keep firms afloat through schemes such as Bounce Back Loans must now feel like a deadweight to many business owners, slowly dragging them under. Sole Traders and SMEs have been hard hit and the additional economic pain caused by the cost of living crisis and the War in Ukraine just seems to be never-ending. The figures suggest more people are taking whatever steps they can to get debt help, but for many, it’s simply too late. ”

Are you at risk of going insolvent? Talk to CPA about a little known form of compensation due to B2B companies.

Or are you worried about your customers going insolvent, owing you money in unpaid bills? CPA can speed up those payments and help you avoid those at risk.

Just call Peter Uwins, CPA’s National Sales Manager, on 020 8846 0000 (business hours) or email today.

When you see your money come in, you will be so glad you used CPA.

Breaking NEWS – Inflation falls to 4.6% meeting the Government pledge to halve inflation in a year

UK Inflation fell sharply in October to 4.6% from 6.7% the previous month, hitting a two-year low. The headline consumer price index was flat on a monthly basis. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the headline CPI to rise by 4.8% year-on-year and 0.1% from the previous month. Core CPI — which excludes volatile food, energy, alcohol and tobacco prices — fell to an annual 5.7% in October from 6.1% in September.

More tomorrow

Pay outpaces inflation at fastest rate since 2021

Wages have risen faster than inflation by the most for two years, Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows. Annual growth in regular pay – which excludes bonuses – was 7.7% in July to September, with this down from the 7.9% pay growth recorded in the three months to August. With bonuses included, average wage growth came in at 7.9%. This was down from the 8.2% growth logged in the three months to August.

The figures mean that, once inflation was taken into account, regular pay was up 1% in real terms in the year to September. The ONS estimates that average weekly earnings hit £621 for regular pay in September and £673 for total pay, which includes bonuses.

The ONS figures also show that the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.2%, while the number of job vacancies has continued to fall, slipping by 58,000 to 957,000 between August and October.

PwC economist Jake Finney said it appears that the labour market is “gradually cooling, not collapsing,” while Yael Selfin, chief economist at KPMG, said: “The labour market remains vulnerable.” On what the ONS jobs and wage data means for Bank of England rate setters, Thomas Pugh, an economist at RSM UK, said the figures “should satisfy” the Monetary Policy Committee that it “just needs to be patient in order to see wage growth and inflation return to more normal levels.”

Soaring inflation equivalent to 3p income tax rise

Higher prices have cost workers the equivalent of a 3p rise in income tax over the past two years, new research suggests. An analysis by the House of Commons library found that for 22 months of the last two years, average salaries increased by less than the rising cost of living. Workers earning £28,400 in October 2021 were £697 worse off than they would have been if pay had kept pace with inflation. For those earning £55,000 a year, the loss was even greater, with average salaries now £1,348 less than expected. The study shows that these losses were greater than if the Government had increased income tax by 3p in the pound and average earnings had kept pace with inflation.

Hunt: ‘Fiscal discipline’ is working

With analysts predicting that official statistics will show inflation has fallen to 4.8%, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt says “fiscal discipline” is working, telling MPs that “continued progress” on curbing price increases was down to the Government’s efforts to reduce borrowing. Mr Hunt told the Commons: “As we start to win the battle against inflation, we can focus on the next stage which is growth.” If forecasts are correct and inflation has fallen below 5%, it would mean the Prime Minister has hit his target of halving inflation this year. Although it is expected to have fallen, the rate remains well above the Bank of England’s 2% target.

Business leaders call for ‘British Isa’ to boost the economy

A group of investors, brokers, and chief executives have called on the Chancellor to create a ‘British Isa’ to end a “downward spiral of investment and lower valuations” on London’s markets. In a letter to the Times, they call for a dedicated incentive for backers of UK-listed companies that would put the £70bn invested each year into the tax-efficient savings accounts “to work on behalf of the UK.” Signatories say it is an “oddity of the current Isa regime” that it “offers the same incentives for savers to invest in overseas as domestic businesses.” A British Isa, they argue, would give taxpayers the chance to invest in growing the UK economy and supporting British companies, “reviving interest in raising equity in the UK, driving economic growth, spreading prosperity and boosting tax revenues.” The letter was co-ordinated by venture capital investor BGF and investment bank Singer Capital Markets. The 93 signatories include asset managers with £35bn under management and listed companies collectively employing more than 150,000 people.


The pound surged to $1.2485 against the USD after US inflation cooled to 3.2%. Mid cap shares also surged while the big caps who earn most of their money overseas only showed modest gains.

Employer sponsorship scheme prioritises immigration control over workers’ rights

A report by the Work Rights Centre has found that the Home Office’s employer sponsorship system, which replaced freedom of movement after Brexit, prioritises immigration control over workers’ rights. The report analysed 40 cases of migrant workers at risk of exploitation and found that the system creates an inadequate and hostile national policy environment. Some workers are scammed in their home countries by agents who charge them large sums of money to organise their visas and secure an employer sponsor. If the promised job fails to materialise, workers are fearful of reporting the employer in case their visa is voided. The report recommends reforming the system to end migrant worker dependency on a sponsor and introducing a single enforcement body for reporting abuse.

More employers use AI in graduate recruitment

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in graduate recruitment has tripled in the past year, with 26% of companies now incorporating the technology into their hiring processes, according to a report by the Institute of Student Employers (ISE). The most common use of AI is in conducting or analysing psychometric tests (16%), followed by pre-screening candidates (8%) and analysing video interviews (7%). While 83% of employers in favour of using the tech reported that AI increased speed and efficiency in recruitment, 70% still preferred a more people-centric approach. On concerns about AI, 66% flagged issues around reliability, while 55% were worried about its potential for bias, while 33% pointed to data security concerns. Georgia Greer, head of insights at the ISE, said: “AI is creating opportunities for employers to do things differently in a more effective way,” adding: “It can be a juggling act for recruiters who want the efficiencies, but are questioning the ethics and whether they’re comfortable removing human interaction from the process.”

Landlords selling up as mortgage arrears double

Analysis by estate agent Hamptons shows that by the end of 2023, private landlords will have sold almost 300,000 more homes than they have bought since 2016. While landlords are set to sell 139,820 buy-to-lets by the end of 2023, this is 53,000 fewer than in 2022 and 62,000 fewer than in 2021. A recent poll by the National Residential Landlords Association shows that landlords are now more than twice as likely to sell properties than they are to purchase them. This is partly driven by cost concerns, with UK Finance data showing that the number of landlords in mortgage arrears has doubled year-on-year from 5,760 to 11,540, with separate figures showing that the number of insolvencies among limited companies owned by buy-to-let landlords has increased by more than a third.

Chancellor urged to hand FRC a competitiveness objective

An influential panel of City figures have urged the Chancellor to hand the Financial Reporting Council a formal competitiveness objective, complementing those of other financial watchdogs. This, the Capital Markets Industry Taskforce says, “will ensure that the future design of our corporate governance and stewardship regimes takes into account not just good governance and stewardship, but also the attractiveness of the UK capital markets for both existing and potential domestic and international issuers, as well as domestic and international investors.”

Home working slows infrastructure projects, says IPA

Working from home is “slowing down all infrastructure projects” in the UK, Nick Smallwood, chief executive of the Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA), has warned. Mr Smallwood, who leads the government body charged with supporting the delivery of major projects, told MPs on the Treasury Select Committee that some are being delayed because more designers are working from home. He said: “I’ve seen a significant extension of design duration on projects as a result of hybrid working,” adding: “What we’ve seen post-pandemic is a nine to 12-month extension of those durations, that translates into cost and delay.”

Latest Insolvencies

Appointment of Administrator – ADM PRECISION TOOLS LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – H. B. PROJECTS LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – HEAT RECRUITMENT LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – ALTOCAPA ADVISORY LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – S & J LAING HOLDINGS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – SMILE PUBLISHING LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – ABIGAIL HORNE LTD
Appointment of Administrator – UK CEMETERY HOLDINGS 1 LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – FEDSURE INVESTMENTS (UK) LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – FAST SALE TODAY LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – 6 DEEPDALE LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – DARE TO BARE LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – P3 PPM CONSULTING LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – WEBELEMENTS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – DOO PROPERTIES LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – AFK LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – STUDLANDS ESTATES LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – TRADED ENDOWMENT POLICIES LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – BROOKSON (5158D) LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – HOVE DEC LTD
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – PARAGRIM LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – S T INDIA LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – UK TOPBOX LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – SORRENTO IT LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – DC WAKEFIELD LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – WESSEX TYRES LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – ADVERTISING PRACTICE LIMITED(THE)
Appointment of Administrator – SOLLER FOUR LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – LEINSTER PROPERTIES LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – DP (HOLDINGS) LIMITED
Winding up Order (Companies) – EBONYCARE LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – BUREAU MOVE LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – GREENTEC POWER SOLUTIONS LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – POLSTAR LTD
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – S BEST LODGE LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – BUREAU WORKSPACE LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – TOTS BOTS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – DENNIS FOWLES LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – KEYMER LEASING LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – TRUEFLOW SURVEYS LTD


Why should you become a CPA member!

The Credit Protection Association (CPA) has been assisting thousands of UK businesses to get paid, since 1914. We have seen many financial crises, this one will be particularly deadly for suppliers for some time to come.

CPA eases cash from tardy debtors – Efficiently, Effectively, Economically and Ethically. And we provide credit information so you can monitor and assess your key customers.

Unlike other credit management companies, we offer our members a fixed annual subscription regardless of how high the debt value maybe!

Just call Peter Uwins, CPA’s National Sales Manager, on 020 8846 0000 (business hours) or email today.

When you see your money come in, you will be so glad you used CPA.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections


Do you have a commercial late payer that is causing you grief? Use CPA’s no-win, no-fee, commercial debt recovery service!

If you have a particular business customer who is late paying and causing you sleepless nights, why not offer it to CPA for purchase on recourse?

CPA’s collection department will then pursue the debt. We will be liable for any costs incurred and then when we have recovered the debt, we will pay you the net principle debt recovered less our percentage.

Once you have enjoyed that success then you can consider the more cost effective membership which includes our Overdue Account Recovery service and Status/Credit reports as well as a range of other complimentary services.

Just call  020 8846 0000 and ask for Godfrey Nelson or Cris Shirley (business hours) or email today.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections.


Get compensated for previous late payments

Have you been paid late by business customers in the last six years?

Maybe you no longer work with them. Under legislation, you are entitled to  compensation you for those late payments you have suffered.

You put up with the PAIN – now claim the GAIN!

Claim late payment compensation (LPC) from former business customers who paid you late in the last six years!

CPA (LPC) Recoveries is using our bespoke software and decades of experience to do just that for our clients

Check our compensation calculator to see how much your business could be owed!

Discover NOW the potential value of late payment compensation hidden in your sales ledger!

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections.