Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz reported Monday morning that 3,477 Connecticut businesses shut their doors between Jan.1 and March 31.

This represents the highest number of shut-downs ever in any first quarter of a year since the Secretary of the State’s Office started releasing business starts and stops data in 2000.

During this same time some 6,941 new businesses started up in Connecticut, representing the lowest number of first quarter start-ups since 2001.

After reviewing the report, Fred Carstensen, Director of the Center for Economic Analysis at the University of Connecticut said, “The rapidity of the loss of businesses establishments in Connecticut is deeply troubling. Small business plays a crucial role in job creation; the continuing loss of businesses underlines the profound challenge we face in preserving and then expanding jobs.”

Don Klepper-Smith, Chief Economist and Director of Research for DataCore Partners LLC and Chairman of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors said, “The first quarter statistics on CT business starts and closings were disappointing, but not unexpected.”

Click here to view a chart of the business starts and stops recorded by Bysiewicz’s office.