Bankruptcy filing increases reach 15 consecutive months
What some experts might consider to be what the federal government has given and taken away during the past three years is manifesting itself significantly in the bankruptcy space.
Epiq Bankruptcy and the American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) spotted six double-digit year-over-year increases — another one at triple digits — when reviewing the October filing data that also showed a streak of increases extending to 15 consecutive months.
According to that information provided by Epiq, bankruptcy filings totaled 40,628 in October, representing a 24% year-over-year rise from the 32,707 cases filed in October 2022.
Epiq reported individual bankruptcy filings totaled 38,440 in October, registering a 25% increase from 30,791 completed in October 2022.
Experts said there were 22,473 individual Chapter 7 filings in October. That figure generated a 31% increase year-over-year from the 17,125 filings recorded in October 2022.
Furthermore, there were 15,901 individual Chapter 13 filings in October. That amount computed to be a 17% jump year-over-year from the 13,618 filings in October of the previous year.
Meanwhile, Epiq said overall commercial filings increased 14% to 2,188 in October, up from the 1,916 commercial filings registered in October 2022.
Experts noted small business filings, captured as subchapter V elections within Chapter 11, spiked 47% to 176 in October, up from 120 a year earlier.
And there were 631 commercial Chapter 11 filings registered in October, a whopping increase of 106 percent from the 306 filings registered in October 2022.
“As emergency funding from the government, lender forbearance, and lower borrowing costs helped to decrease filings during the COVID-19 pandemic, bankruptcies have steadily increased following the sunset of government funding, interest rates increases, inflation growth, and tightening lending standards,” said AACER vice president Todd Madsen, an executive for the Epiq platform that makes bankruptcy available to clients.
“October marks 15 consecutive months that total, individual, and commercial bankruptcy filings have registered monthly year-over-year increases,” Madsen continued in a news release.
Epiq reported October filing totals also registered increases across most filing categories when compared to September.
October’s total bankruptcy filings represented a 9% increase when compared to the 37,346 total filings recorded in September.
Total individual filings for October also marked a 9% jump from the September filing total of 35,141.
Likewise, experts pointed out individual Chapter 7 filings jumped 14% and Chapter 13 filings ticked up 4% over September’s filings.
Epiq added commercial Chapter 11 filings increased 8% from September’s chapter 11 filing total of 584.
Conversely, the commercial filing total decreased 1% from the September commercial filing total of 2,205.
“Increased prices for goods and services, along with higher borrowing costs, add to the economic challenges faced by distressed families and businesses,” ABI executive director Amy Quackenboss said. “Bankruptcy provides a proven process for struggling consumers and companies to alleviate their intensifying debt loads and a chance for a financial fresh start.”
ABI has partnered with Epiq Bankruptcy to provide the most current bankruptcy filing data for analysts, researchers and members of the news media.