Football players in Scotland are unlikely to see their wages rise as the majority of SPL clubs do not expect to make any money this season, according to a report.
Accounting and business advice firm PKF said a "widening gap" could emerge between the wages paid to players in Scotland compared to their English counterparts.
The company's annual football survey, Leagues Apart, showed that two thirds of Scottish Premier League clubs do not expect to make a profit before player trading and depreciation during the 2012/13 season.
Only 17% of respondents said their financial situation is "healthy" - the lowest proportion of any of the leagues questioned.
PKF said it is "worrying" that two thirds of SPL clubs who responded say they are dependent on their principal shareholder to cover cover annual revenue shortfalls or operating losses.
Six SPL teams participated in the survey (there are 12 teams in the top flight in Scotland), as well as clubs in the English Premier League, Football League Championship, and Football Leagues One and Two, with a total of 62 finance directors questioned.
A third of SPL sides reported that they will pay first team players the same amount as last year, while two thirds said they will pay less. However, transfer budgets will remain the same, according to the survey.
PKF said the survey shows that, with the exception of a few of the top sides, it is becoming increasingly difficult to run a football club without losing money.
Charles Barnett, head of the football industry group at the firm, said: "There is clear evidence that clubs are absorbing some of the financial lessons of the last decade and are reducing wages to turnover to ensure they operate within a manageable ratio. However, it is also equally clear that players and their agents may not have absorbed this lesson and are continuing to demand wages which are untenable for the majority of Scottish clubs.
"The result is likely to be a widening gap between the wages players are paid in Scotland compared to their English counterparts. This will have worrying ramifications for the future development of Scottish football as it is unlikely SPL teams will attract top players in the same way as clubs in England which will, in turn, widen the gap between wages in Scotland and England."