The American Bankruptcy Institute, citing data from Epiq Systems, reported total U.S. commercial bankruptcy filings increased 32% in April 2016 over April of last year.
Commercial filings totaled 3,482 in April 2016, up from the April 2015 total of 2,641. April is the sixth consecutive month with a year-over-year increase in commercial filings. Total commercial Chapter 11 filings also climbed in April 2016, as the 680 filings were 67% more than the 408 commercial Chapter 11 filings registered in April 2015. However, total bankruptcy filings decreased 10% to 70,457 in April 2016, down from the April 2015 total of 77,949. Consumer filings were 66,975, dropping 11% from the April 2015 consumer filing total of 75,308.
“Distress within a number of sectors, including energy and retail, has more businesses turning to the financial relief of bankruptcy,” said ABI Executive Director Samuel J. Gerdano. “To provide struggling companies a better chance of reorganization rather than liquidation, ABI’s Commission to Study the Reform of Chapter 11 provided recommendations to modernize the Bankruptcy Code for today’s evolving corporate climate.”
April’s commercial filing total represented a 3% increase from the March 2016 commercial filing total of 3,369. Commercial Chapter 11 filings increased 51% when compared to the 450 filings in March 2016. However, total bankruptcy filings for the month of April decreased 10% when compared to the 78,344 total filings recorded the previous month. Total noncommercial filings for April represented an 11 percent decrease from the March 2016 noncommercial filing total of 74,975.
The average nationwide per capita bankruptcy-filing rate in April was 2.56 (total filings per 1,000 per population), an increase from the 2.51 rate registered in the first three months of the year. Average total filings per day in April 2016 were 2,349, a 10% decrease from the 2,598 total daily filings in April 2015.