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SMEs high on list of corporate insolvencies


Fresh data from ASIC has shown that small-to-medium size corporate insolvencies again dominated external administrators’ reports for the 2015-16 financial year.

By Katarina Taurian 8 minute read

ASIC yesterday published an annual overview of corporate insolvencies, Report 507 Insolvency statistics: External administrators’ reports (July 2015 to June 2016).

The report summarises information from 9,465 reports that ASIC received from external administrators for the 2015–16 financial year.

The collated information shows small-to-medium size corporate insolvencies again dominated external administrators’ reports.

Specifically, 86 per cent had assets of $100,000 or less; 79 per cent had less than 20 employees; and 46 per cent had liabilities of $250,000 or less.

Further, 97 per cent of creditors in this group received between 0-11 cents in the dollar, reflecting the asset/liability profile of small-to-medium size corporate insolvencies.

Keeping with the patterns of the last three financial years, the industries with the most lodgements for the 2015-16 financial year were construction, accommodation and ‘other’ – which ASIC outlines as business and personal services.

The top three nominated causes of failure included inadequate cash flow at 46 per cent, up from 44 per cent compared to the previous reporting period and poor strategic management of the business, also at 44 per cent.

Poor financial control, including lack of records, was the third nominated cause of failure at 34 per cent. In the two previous reporting periods, trading losses were the third most common cause of failure.

In the reporting period, external administrators lodged 7,797 reports alleging misconduct.

ASIC asked external administrators to prepare 831 supplementary reports where external administrators alleged company officer misconduct. This accounted for 10.7 per cent of all reports, which alleged misconduct, lodged in the financial year.

Over the last three financial years, after assessment, ASIC referred on average between 17 and 19 per cent of these cases for investigation or surveillance.

You can access the full report here.


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Katarina Taurian


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