Business Recovery

UK firms at risk of insolvency have doubled in last year

Last year, 62 UK listed companies issued their third consecutive profit warning

The number of UK listed firms facing insolvency has doubled over the last 12 months, according to EY’s ‘Profit Warnings Report’.

Some 62 UK listed companies issued at least their third profit warning in 2020, which represents 5% of listed companies in the country and 10% of the FTSE 350.

Around 583 profit warnings were issued by UK listed companies last year, which is the highest annual total in 21 years of EY’s research.

Alan Hudson, EY-Parthenon partner and UK&I Turnaround and Restructuring strategy leader, said: “Many UK businesses have been treading on thin ice for months with government support propping them up.

“While there is speculation these measures could be extended until the summer, the countdown has started, and in weeks or months we’ll find out how many companies can keep their head above water.”

He added: “The record-breaking levels of profit warnings, particularly from the first half of the year, are at odds with the significantly low number of corporate insolvencies. Insolvencies in the UK haven’t been dodged, they’ve been deferred and we’re likely to see an influx of these from spring onwards.”


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