Dutch bankruptcies down, but worries persist for 2011

A record number of Dutch people were declared insolvent in 2010, although the trend is down and corporate failures are also charting a more optimistic course. However, 2010 is still one of the highest numbers of bankruptcies ever in one year, according to the Dutch Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS).

In total there were 9600 bankruptcies last year. That is 9 percent less than in 2009. The slight economic recovery in 2010 is also reflected in the bankruptcies.

Overall company liquidations amounted to 6300 in 2010 (excluding sole proprietorships). That is 10 percent lower than one year earlier, but still one of the highest numbers of corporate bankruptcies that CBS has ever seen in one year.

The number of individual insolvencies declined by 7 percent to 2300. 2.01 million were sole proprietorships, about half of self-employed, bankrupt. That is 6 percent less than in 2009.

Almost all industries saw a decrease in number of bankruptcies in 2010. Only the construction industry (20 percent) and restaurants (7 percent) had an increase. In construction there was a large part of the bankruptcies of companies in building. In catering, it was more restaurants and cafes.

Despite a sharp decline the business services sector still recorded the most bankruptcies (1500). Here, many legal, service and economic consultancy, employment agencies, architects offices and technical consultancy went bankrupt.

The number of individual insolvencies declined in 2010 strongest in Flevoland, 45 percent from 2009. In almost all provinces, fewer people went bankrupt, except in Overijssel and Limburg. On average, 2 out of every 10000 Dutch people aged 18 years or older went bankrupt.

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