New business statistics from the Committee of Scottish Clearing Bankers were published today for the third quarter 2012. As I noted in previous posts this series records new business start-ups based in Scotland that have opened accounts with any of the four Scottish Clearing Banks. It is a valuable series because it should be expected that the creation of new firms would move in line with overall economic performance and GDP in particular.
The data show a drop in new business formation between the second and third quarters with the number of new starts falling by 593 from 3,684 to 3,091. But the CSCB data are not seasonally adjusted, so I have constructed a four-quarter moving average, which smoothes out some of the seasonality and other short-term fluctuations. The updated chart is here
There continues to be no evidence of a recovery.
Using the moving average series, which smoothes the non-seasonally adjusted actual data, the number of starts is 45 percent below the pre-recession peak compared to 44 percent in the second quarter. Alternatively, the latest numbers are 33 percent below the average quarterly starts in the period before the recession started, compared to 31 percent in the second quarter.
No evidence of entrepreneurial buzz in these data.