New figures from accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers have revealed an increase in corporate insolvencies during the second quarter of the year.
The data shows that 5,465 companies entered insolvency between April and June 2011. This was an increase of 1.1 per cent on the same period in 2010.
Compared to the first quarter of the year, numbers were down 2.6 per cent.
However, this was mainly driven by a drop in administrations, with the number of compulsory and creditors' voluntary liquidations rising 2.7 per cent.
David Chubb, a business recovery services partner at PwC, said the figures may not fully reflect the difficulties companies are facing at the moment.
"Although the overall corporate insolvency figures show a slight increase on the same quarter last year, in our view, many businesses are experiencing increasing difficulties in the current economic climate," he remarked.
"It seems that there may be a lot of businesses closing down without the need for an insolvency process because they are making the conscious decision to cease trading before the business reaches the point of no return."
On a more positive note, he pointed out that banks and other stakeholders appear to be offering more support to struggling businesses to help them avoid corporate insolvency where possible.
One sector that does appear to be suffering at the moment is the pub industry, which saw a 30 per cent rise in insolvencies during the second quarter compared to the same period a year ago.
Mr Chubb said this is a trend that could continue, as spending cuts feed through into the economy and consumers tighten their belts.
He pointed out that the wet weather in July is unlikely to have helped matters, but he added that the hope of better conditions in August, coupled with the start of the football season, should provide a boost.