Non-payment will remain a risk for businesses as insolvencies will continue to hit global markets in 2016, according to the latest Insolvency Forecast released by trade credit insurer Atradius.
The report analyses insolvency levels in 22 key trade markets and finds that, while insolvencies are forecast to fall in 15 markets, the improvements are expected to be small, due to the pressure of low oil prices, US monetary normalisation and emerging markets slowdown.
The strongest rise in insolvencies, at 6%, is observed in Australia, which is particularly affected by the low commodity prices. Oil prices will put pressure on the US and Canadian economies, but Canada’s insolvencies are not expected to change, and the US forecast sees a 2% drop.
In the eurozone, despite the economic recovery and a positive forecast for the business environment, Atradius only finds a 5% fall in aggregate insolvencies.
The improvement in insolvency rates will be particularly strong in the Netherlands and Spain, with a 15% and a 10% drop respectively. Spain’s levels, however, remain 2.5% higher than in 2007.
Other Southern European economies like Greece, Portugal and Italy also register business bankruptcies levels between 2.8 and 5% higher than the pre-recession period, with the total number of bankruptcies anticipated for 2016 67% higher than in 2007.
“The challenging external environment combined with low commodity prices is putting pressure on global markets, which is increasing the risk of insolvencies in spite of strengthening domestic economies. This is a clear warning shot to businesses which must stay attuned to the risks of trading even as the economy recovers,” says Jason Curtis, commercial director at Atradius.