Daily News: February 2, 2012

Equifax Reports Decrease in Commercial Bankruptcy Petitions

According to Equifax Commercial Information Solutions analysis, bankruptcy petition rates have nearly returned to pre-recession index levels. Commercial petitions for bankruptcy decreased 44% since their peak in Q2/09 through Q4/11, while consumer petitions peaked a year later in Q2/10 and declined 26% through the end of 2011.

“The belt tightening in the commercial, small business sector resulted in a decline in business failures and speaks to the improving health of today’s small business market,” said Dr. Reza Barazesh, senior vice president, Equifax Commercial Information Solutions.

While both consumer and commercial petitions for bankruptcy declined steadily from the second quarter of 2011 through year end, commercial bankruptcy filings still remained lower declining 28%. Consumer bankruptcy filings have declined 22% since Q2/11.

“Our latest analysis of bankruptcy rates appears to show some signs of stabilization,” said Barazesh. “The downward trend in the number of bankruptcies is an indication of the improvement in economic conditions.”

Equifax analyzed Chapter 7, 11 and 13 filings, as part of its comparative study on bankruptcy petitions quarter over quarter. Equifax classifies a small business as a commercial entity of fewer than 100 employees.