A TRADE body has warned that the number of corporate insolvencies are likely to remain high in 2024.

R3, the UK’s insolvency and restructuring trade body, warned the increase in insolvencies will continue unless the economic picture improves.

But the trade body said there is cause for optimism as inflation ‘has continued to fall faster than expected’.

Neil Stewart, chairman of R3’s Southern and Thames Valley region, is cautiously optimistic the landscape will improve in 2024, despite difficulties in 2023.

Neil said: “If the overall economic picture improves, costs stabilise and spending picks up as consumer and business confidence increase, then the tide should start to turn.

“It is inescapable, though, that increases in creditors’ voluntary liquidations (CVLs), compulsory liquidations and administrations have driven corporate insolvencies to a 30-year high.

Neil, a regional associate director at insolvency litigation financing company Manolete Partners, added: “Financial distress and money worries are still serious problems in England and Wales, and the last 12 months have hit many people’s finances hard.

“Rising bills, food and fuel prices were a major concern and a major expense in 2023, while high inflation forced up interest rates and left a lot of people worrying about the cost of mortgages and loans. “The good news is that inflation has continued to fall faster than expected. The price of food, energy and fuel are still a worry for many, but there’s light at the end of the tunnel – depending, of course, on events in the increasingly volatile wider world.”

Neil urged any businesses or individuals worried about their finances to seek advice as soon as possible.

“Forgive the broken record: if you are worried about your finances, don’t wait because they won’t get better on their own,” he said.

“You might be surprised at the range of options open to you if you seek advice early, or the lack of them if you don’t.

“Most R3 members will give a free consultation to prospective clients, so they can learn more about their circumstances, and outline which options, tailored to their situation, should work best.”