According to recent data from the Insolvency Service, the UK construction industry has recorded the highest number of insolvencies across all sectors in the 12 months leading up to March 2023.
A total of 4,165 insolvencies were lodged in the first three months of 2023 alone, accounting for nearly one-fifth (19%) of all cases in industries with captured data.
Following the construction industry were the wholesale and retail trade and repair of vehicles (3,518 insolvencies, 16% of cases) and accommodation and food services (2,951 insolvencies, 13% of cases). This continues the trend of construction having the highest quarterly number of insolvencies among all industrial sectors.
In terms of overall company insolvencies, there was an 18% increase compared to the same first-quarter period in 2022. Company insolvency statistics for England and Wales, together with figures for Scotland and Northern Ireland, show a 4% decrease in total company insolvencies in Q1 2023 compared to Q4 2022. After seasonal adjustments, England and Wales registered a total of 5,747 company insolvencies in Q1 2023.
Scotland experienced a significant increase in company insolvencies, with 297 cases reported in Q1 2023, a 41% increase compared to the same quarter in 2022. In contrast, Northern Ireland saw a decrease of 29% with 40 company insolvencies in Q1 2023 compared to Q1 2022.
Over the 12 months ending Q1 2023, 1 in every 197 companies faced liquidation, a higher ratio than those recorded in the 12-month periods ending Q4 2022 and Q1 2022.