A Radcliffe-based insolvency company says the next few months will be "make or break" for business ahead of the chancellor’s autumn statement this week.

Steven Mason, an insolvency practitioner and senior manager at Inquesta, says businesses are hoping for the chancellor of the exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, will announce support in his upcoming autumn statement.

The autumn statement, due to be given on Wednesday, November 22, will provide updates on the state of the economy.

Steven said that one of the biggest concerns for business is high tax with many firms hoping for tax cuts.

He said: “Although the chancellor has played down the likelihood of tax cuts, focusing instead on tackling inflation, small businesses are still hoping for a few crumbs of comfort to help them through this difficult period.

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“Almost a third of SMEs in a recent poll said high tax was a major concern. Those frustrated by such taxes remain hopeful that recent rumours about Jeremy Hunt considering a £10bn cut in business taxes come true."

However, Steven added that there is reason for a "slither of optimism" due to £13bn in "fiscal headroom" due to stealth taxes, which is double the level forecast for the Spring Budget.

He added: “UK manufacturers are pushing for reforms to the business tax and regulatory system. The sector wants changes to improve competitiveness and encourage research and innovation.

“In the Spring Budget, it was announced that loss-making research and development SMEs would be able to claim £27 for every £100 spent on R&D.

“SMEs would welcome a merged R&D scheme to help power innovation in the UK.”

Steven added that "growth is a huge factor for businesses" but businesses were still struggling with increased interest rates and spiralling costs due to inflation.

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He said: “Inflation may be falling, but this isn't happening fast enough for many businesses. Insolvencies in the north west rose by eight per cent in October compared to September, according to R3, the UK's insolvency and restructuring trade body.

“The next few months may be make or break for many businesses which have limped on over the last few months.

“It will be interesting to see what plans, if any, the chancellor has to return the UK economy to growth and prevent a recession in 2024.”