In the first six months of 2009, more than twice as many companies in the sectors trade and business services were declared bankrupt as in the same period one year previously. According to Statistics Netherlands, the amount of bankruptcies of companies and private individuals recorded over a six-month period has never been as high as in the first half of 2009.
Highest number of bankruptcies since the early 1980s
In total, there were more than twice as many business bankruptcies over the first six months of 2009 as in the same period last year. The number of private bankruptcies was 16 percent up on one year previously. Altogether, 1.8 thousand private persons and 3.5 thousand businesses and institutions were declared bankrupt. The number of bankruptcies recorded over a six-month period is unprecedented since Statistics Netherlands began to survey bankruptcies in the early 1980s.
High bankruptcy rate in trade and services
The bulk of bankruptcies occurred in the sectors trade and repairs and business services. More than half of companies declared bankrupt in the first six months of 2009 were included in these two sectors.
In the sector trade and repairs, bankruptcies mainly concerned car trade and repairs, and wholesalers and retailers in the clothes and DIY branches. In the sector business services, most bankruptcies were recorded among temp agencies, management consultancies and architectural firms and design agencies.
Business bankruptcies (excluding one-man businesses)
Most substantial increase in manufacturing industry
The most dramatic increase in business bankruptcies relative to one year previously occurred in manufacturing industry. Publishers and printers and companies specialised in design of industrial equipment and companies manufacturing metal products, e.g. structures for the construction sector, windows, doors and frames were hit hard.
Total number of bankruptcy declarations by province
Bankruptcies more than doubled in North Brabant and Friesland
In the first half of this year, most business and private bankruptcies were filed in the provinces of South Holland, North Brabant and North Holland. The most substantial increase occurred in North Brabant and Friesland: the amount of bankruptcies more than doubled relative to the first half of 2008. In the provinces of Gelderland and Utrecht, the number of bankruptcies showed an increase by 88 and 69 percent respectively compared to one year previously.
Vinodh Lalta and Dick Boer