Evidence of a growing disparity between north and south has emerged in the latest business insolvency figures from financial services house Experian, which highlighted growing numbers of business failures last month in Scotland, and high levels of insolvencies in both the north east of England and Yorkshire.
Scotland was in fact the only region of the UK to see insolvencies rise year-on-year, up from 73 to 98, while although more total companies went to the wall in the stablest areas, the south west of England and London, in percentage terms both regions saw substantial improvement.
"The UK's business community as a whole is stabilising, however ... businesses in the north of England seemed to be faring slightly worse than their southern counterparts across all industry sectors," said Rolf Hickman, managing director of Experian-owned practice pH Group.
"Although the data hint at some improvements, individual organisations are impacted in different ways. It is vityal for businesses to understand the circumstances of those they are doing busienss with and the risks they could expose them to," he added.
Overall, 1,771 firms failed during June 2010, down 13.4% on the same period last year. The overall financial strength score of UK businesses also improved, said Experian, from 80.83 in June 2009 to 80.66 last month.
Firms employing between 11 and 25 people saw the greatest year-on-year reduction in the insolvency rate.