Brexit has been a catalyst for negativity across global economies and insolvency levels are expected to be the weakest since 2009 according to global trade credit insurer Atradius.

In a new report, The Insolvency Forecast, the company says the UK’s decision to leave the European Union (EU) has sparked a downward revision of GDP forecasts, which has led to a worsening of bankruptcy projections in a number of advanced markets.

Senior risk manager for Atradius, Simon Rockett, says: “Brexit is already impacting confidence in the UK with the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) contracting to a level not seen since April 2009. The Brexit fallout is likely to extend further across European markets with countries struggling indirectly with the economic slowdowns.”

“A decline in confidence and the increasing uncertainty in the economy has a knock-on impact on the trading landscape. However, keeping trade links open is key to stimulating the economy.”

The report forecasts insolvencies in the UK to rise by 2% in 2016 and by 3% in 2017. Greece is expected to face a 6% increase in business failures this year followed by a further rise next year. Insolvencies are also predicted to rise year-on-year in Finland, Switzerland, Denmark, Canada, New Zealand, Austria, Sweden and Luxembourg.

Struggling commodities prices will continue to add pressure to commodity-rich countries like Australia and Norway where bankruptcies for 2016 are expected to increase by 8% and 2% respectively.

The report did have some positive news too. Insolvency levels were expected to reduce for Spain, the Netherlands, Ireland, Portugal and Italy – – albeit with underlying levels remaining high. Spain is expected to be the best performer with a 10% fall in bankruptcies anticipated for this year on the back of growth and recovery from a low level. Portugal and Italy, meanwhile, will only see 2% reductions from levels that are significantly higher than pre-crisis times.