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UPDATE 1-Swathe of UK hospitality firms see risk of insolvency: ONS

Thu, 22nd Oct 2020 10:31

(Adds details)

LONDON, Oct 22 (Reuters) - More than a third of British
hospitality companies are at risk of going bust, according to a
survey on Thursday that suggested more support will be needed
for businesses amid a resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Office for National Statistics said 17% of food and
accommodation businesses reported a "severe" risk of insolvency,
while a further 21% said the risk was "moderate".

The data underscore a warning made last week by the head of
the UK Hospitality trade body, Kate Nicholls, that renewed
restrictions to curb the pandemic could turn out to be the
"death knell" for many businesses.

The data also showed 29% of manufacturers reported at least
a moderate risk of insolvency.

Finance minister Rishi Sunak is due to update parliament
later on Thursday on measures to support jobs.

Nearly a tenth of Britain's workforce remained furloughed
during the two weeks to Oct. 4, the ONS said, with the scheme
due to close at the end of this month.

With localised lockdowns spreading across the country, the
ONS said the proportion of adults who travelled to work in the
week to Oct. 18 fell by 5 percentage points to 60%.
(Reporting by Andy Bruce, editing by David Milliken and Sarah
Young)

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