Home Business NewsBusiness ONS: Increase in number of businesses not expecting to survive

ONS: Increase in number of businesses not expecting to survive

by LLB Reporter
18th Nov 21 10:35 am

The percentage of currently trading businesses has fallen slightly from 93% in late October 2021, to 91% in early November 2021, according to the Office for National Statistics.

This is the first time the figure had fallen since January 2021 and is primarily led by the transportation and storage industry.

Over a quarter (28%) of businesses currently trading reported a decrease in turnover compared with normal expectations for this time of year; this is up from 24% in late September 2021, and is the highest percentage since early August 2021.

Of businesses not permanently stopped trading, 6% reported no or low confidence that they would survive the next 3 months, which compares with 4% reported in early October 2021; the figure was highest (13%) for businesses in the other service activities industry.

Three-quarters (75%) of importing businesses that reported how their importing had been affected experienced a challenge importing in late October to early November 2021, up from 60% in late September 2021; a change in reference period for the question may have impacted responses.

Approximately one in six (17%) of the workforce were estimated to be using a hybrid model of working in late October; this increased to over a fifth (21%) of the workforce in businesses with 100 employees or more.

In early November 2021, half of businesses not permanently stopped trading reported that their workforce had already returned to their normal place of work; in contrast, 1 in 11 businesses do not expect their workforce to return to their normal place of work.

Dr Jackie Mulligan, expert on the Government’s High Streets Task Force and founder of the local shopping platform, Shopappy: “In theory, we’re emerging from the pandemic but for many small business owners, things are getting harder, not easier, so it’s sadly no surprise more are expecting not to survive.

“The removal of all the various Government supports coupled with runaway inflation and increased costs due to supply chain issues is putting an unbearable strain on so many small businesses. Many will need to decide whether to up the prices of their products and services to take the pressure off their own finances, which puts their income and sales at risk, or simply take it on the chin, which can make their business non-viable. Throw Black Friday into the mix, which takes even more revenue away form smaller retailers, and it’s no surprise the high street is facing an existential crisis. We urge people to make wise choices on where they spend this Christmas and the best choice is with small, local businesses.”

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