CRIF AG has investigated how many new businesses were established in the fourth quarter of 2018 and how many companies went out of business. All in all, 11,224 companies were set up during this time, representing a reduction of 2.4 % compared with the same period of the previous year. On the other hand, 7,902 companies were also deleted from the Commercial Register during the fourth quarter, which equates to an increase of 15.5% in deletions compared with the 4th quarter of 2017. In total, 43,202 businesses were set up in 2018, which represents a reduction of 0.5 % in comparison with the previous year.

Most of the new entries were in the cantons of Zurich (1,945), Vaud (1,115), Geneva (990), Bern (875) and Aargau (704). A comparison of the number of business start-ups with those founded in the 4th quarter of 2017 shows that the highest growth was experienced in the Canton of Solothurn, with 31 new start-ups, followed by Valais with 30 and Appenzell Ausserrhoden with 27 new companies.
On the other hand, there was a fall in the number of companies set up the Cantons of Zurich (-135), Bern (-72) and Geneva (-61) compared with the same period of the previous year.

A comparison between the new start-ups and the portfolio of companies existing at the beginning of the year reveals that the canton of Lucerne experienced the highest level of net growth, at 3.3%, followed by the cantons of Zug at 3.1% and Valais at 2.9%. The only canton recording a negative growth was Glarus, with a fall of 1.0%.
A look at the individual sectors reveals that start-ups were most frequent in the area of management consultancy (895) , followed by the retail trade (744) and the construction sector (735).
The largest number of liquidations was experienced by the retail trade (770), followed by the wholesale trade (681), the construction industry (679) and food and beverage (573).

The sectors with the highest net growth are in management consultancy (462), real estate (428) and the financial services (318). There has been a reduction in the number of businesses in the wholesale sector (-91), the insurance sector (-47) and the retail trade (-26).

About the survey process
We have taken into consideration all those businesses that were newly entered into the commercial register in the period ranging from October to December 2018, together with all the businesses that were deleted from the commercial register during the same time. A business may, for example, be deleted automatically at the cessation of bankruptcy proceedings, at the end of a liquidity deadline, in the event of merger or when a company is closed in the absence of any succession arrangements.

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