Total Bankruptcy Filings Drop Again Despite Commercial Uptick

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - 

While a portion of the commercial segment made a jump, the American Bankruptcy Institute reported total filings in the United States decreased 19 percent year-over-year in May.

According to data provided by Epiq Systems, bankruptcy filings totaled 69,286 last month, down from the year-ago figure of 85,711.

Officials noticed May’s consumer filings also declined 19 percent to 66,771, down from the total of 82,473 registered in the same month last year.

ABI indicated total commercial filings for May decreased to 2,515, representing a 22-percent decline from the 3,238 business filings recorded last May. In contrast to the other filing categories, officials pointed out commercial Chapter 11 filings increased 16 percent to 498 filings in May from the 431 commercial Chapter 11 filings registered during the same month in 2014.

“While the May commercial Chapter 11 filings indicate more businesses turned to the bankruptcy code for a fresh start, total and consumer filings continue to decline amid sustained low interest rates and flat consumer debt levels,” ABI executive director Samuel Gerdano said.

“Total filings are on pace for just over 800,000 in 2015,” Gerdano added.

ABI went on to highlight total bankruptcy filings for the month of May represented an 11-percent decrease compared to the 77,919 total filings recorded in April.

Total noncommercial filings for May also represented an 11-percent decrease from the April noncommercial filing total of 75,299.

Officials determined that May’s commercial filing total marked a 4-percent decrease from the April commercial filing total of 2,620.

Conversely, May commercial Chapter 11 filings increased 23 percent when compared to the 405 filings registered the previous month.

ABI noted the average nationwide per capita bankruptcy-filing rate in May was 2.73 (total filings per 1,000 per population), a slight decrease from the 2.74 rate registered in the first four months of the year.

Average total filings per day in May came in at 2,235, a 19-percent decrease from the 2,765 total daily filings in May of last year.

States with the highest per capita filing rates (total filings per 1,000 population) in May included:

1. Tennessee (5.61)

2. Alabama (5.18)

3. Georgia (4.85)

4. Illinois (4.56)

5. Utah (4.34)

ABI partnered with Epiq Systems, a provider of managed technology for the global legal profession, in order to provide the most current bankruptcy filing data for analysts, researchers and members of the news media.

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