AIRY-FAIRY: The windows tax on this Canary Wharf, London, office block would have been immense. Pictures: REUTERS/KEVIN COOMBS

FEWER liquidations were recorded last year compared with 2014, Statistics SA data showed on Monday.

A total of 1,962 companies were liquidated last year compared with 2,064 in 2014.

Although the data suggest that new laws aimed at saving companies before they close shop were effective, their effect was modest given that such a high number of liquidations still occurred.

Fewer companies (119) were also liquidated last month compared with 138 in November.

Liquidations of close corporations decreased 4.2% and liquidations of companies decreased 5.7% between 2014 and 2015, Stats SA reported.

Liquidations were also down in December last year compared with December 2014. The largest decreases related to businesses in the financing, insurance, real estate and business services, and in manufacturing industries.

The estimated number of insolvencies fell 17.8% year-on-year in November 2015. A 21.2% decrease was estimated between the three months ended November 2014 and the three months ended November 2015.

There was a 15.7% decline (from 2,903 to 2,448) in insolvencies in the first 11 months of 2015 compared with the first 11 months of 2014.

Insolvency refers to an individual or partnership that is unable to pay its debt and is placed under final sequestration.