More Lancashire firms "showing distress"

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Fresh figures reveal that more than 8,000 companies in Lancashire showed signs of 'significant' financial distress at the close of Q3 in 2018.

That was a two per cent hike on the same time last year, according to research published today by the Preston office of Begbies Traynor.

The quarterly Red Flag Alert data, which monitors the financial health of Lancashire companies, reports that 8,393 businesses in Lancashire were experiencing significant financial distress at the end of the third quarter of 2018.

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Despite the disappointing figures, there was a two per cent reduction in the number of Lancashire companies in distress compared to the previous quarter (Q2 2018: 8,533) indicating some positive news for firms.

Sectors with the highest leap in distress in the region, compared to the same time last year, are :

*Hotels & Accommodation: (nine per cent year-on-year increase)

*Leisure & Culture: (eight per cent year-on-year increase)

*Travel & Tourism (27 per cent year-on-year increase.

*Utilities saw a 38 per cent year-on-year increase.

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Dean Watson, partner at Begbies Traynor, said: “The tail end of the long hot summer of 2018 bit hard for the travel and tourism industry in Lancashire.

“Put simply, it was all too tempting for people to stay at home.

“More competition in the travel and tourism sector also played a role in driving prices and revenues down.”

He added: “The impact of uncertainty over the Brexit negotiations may have also played a role.

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“Sectors like travel, hotels and tourism that rely on the free movement of people from place to place across the EU will be feeling vulnerable and this may be having an impact on their financial position and business confidence in general.”