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EcoTV Week
16/03/2023 • By Stéphane Colliac

Business insolvencies started to increase again in Western Europe during 2022. In the United Kingdom and Sweden, where growth has deteriorated since the start of 2022, these insolvencies were even higher than their pre-Covid level, with a more significant increase in retail and wholesale trade. In the Eurozone, insolvencies are still below pre-Covid levels, but the current tightening of credit conditions raises the risk that they will reach those levels during 2023. This also applies to France, where there is a risk of wider negative consequences, in particular because these insolvencies take the form of liquidations to a greater extent than before Covid.

The rise in market interest rates since the beginning of 2022 has led to higher bank lending rates in the euro area. Both rates of loans for housing purchase and those of loans to non-financial corporations have been affected. For the time being, developments in bank loans outstanding do not reflect the tightening in bank lending conditions but the early consequences could materialize in 2023.