Chapter 11 U.S. Commercial Bankruptcy Filings up 17% in August

Year over year growth rate slows from prior month

NEW YORK, Sept. 04, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Epiq, a global leader in legal services, released its August 2020 bankruptcy filing statistics from its AACER business. Slowing down from July, commercial Chapter 11 filings are up only 17% over August 2019, with 525 new flings, which is up from 449 from the same period last year. In the first eight months of 2020, Chapter 11 commercial filings are up 28% over the same period last year, with a total of 4,779 filings.

“While we still see growth year over year in Chapter 11 commercial filings, the pace has slowed down significantly over July,” said Deirdre O’Connor, managing director of corporate restructuring at Epiq. “Large corporations are benefiting from robust capital market activity which is providing access to capital at an attractive cost. However, smaller companies are not experiencing the same market dynamics to access liquidity and will consider seeking protection in a bankruptcy. We continue to see steady filings in retail, energy, entertainment, along with travel and leisure.”

As in prior months, non-commercial bankruptcies continue to decline both month over month and year over year. There were 36,842 non-commercial bankruptcy filings in August, down 8% from July which had 40,085. Further, August filings were down 42% over the same period last year, which saw 63,128 non-commercial filings across all Chapters.

“We continue to see delays in filings as government and bank programs provide short-term liquidity relief to consumers,” said Chris Kruse, senior vice president of Epiq AACER. “However, there is a backlog developing as unemployment rates continue to stay high, likely triggering more bankruptcy filings in Q4-2020.” 

Chapter 13 non-commercial filings are down 41% in 2020, with 108,400 filings, which is down from 184,026 filings in the same period of 2019.  Chapter 7 non-commercial filings are down 29% in August 2020 with 27,495 new filings, which is down from 38,604 the same period in 2019. 

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