In 2019 slightly more bankruptcies than in 2018

Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports that, adjusted for court session days, there were 46 fewer corporate bankruptcies in December than in November 2019. The total number of businesses and institutions (excluding one-man businesses) filing for bankruptcy in 2019 stood at 3,208, i.e. 63 more than in 2018.

Number of bankruptcies of businesses and institutions (excluding one-man businesses), adjusted for court sessions days
YearMonthNumber of bankruptcies
2016January401
February483
March394
April385
May343
June384
July371
August287
September299
October303
November417
December332
2017January336
February292
March304
April263
May281
June300
July266
August231
September237
October261
November251
December269
2018January273
February232
March266
April266
May259
June248
July251
August257
September224
October264
November277
December328
2019January283
February251
March274
April278
May261
June268
July271
August258
September254
October250
November285
December239

Trend fairly stable in recent years

Adjusted for court session days, the number of bankruptcies peaked in May 2013. This was followed by a downward trend until September 2017. The subsequent trend has been relatively stable. The number of bankruptcies reached the lowest level of this century in September 2018, after which ups and downs alternated.

Number of bankruptcies in 2019 up by 2 percent year-on-year

Over the entire year 2019, a total of 3,208 bankruptcies were pronounced. This represents a year-on-year increase of 2 percent.

The number of bankruptcies peaked in 2013 at 8,376 and subsequently dropped for five consecutive years, by altogether over 62 percent, in line with economic growth in the Netherlands. In 2019, the number of bankruptcies increased slightly for the first time since 2014. Despite the rise, the number of bankruptcies is still relatively low. The number of bankruptcies in 2019 is the second lowest of this century.

Number of bankruptcies of businesses and institutions (excluding one-man businesses)
 Number
20013333
20024085
20035235
20045267
20055083
20064228
20073589
20083842
20096942
20106162
20116117
20127349
20138376
20146645
20155271
20164399
20173291
20183145
2019*3208
*provisional figures

Sharpest increase in the specialised business services sector

In absolute terms, the increase was most pronounced in specialised business services (including research and consulting firms); the total in that sector increased by 79, from 317 in 2018 to 396 in 2019. In relative terms as well, the increase was sharpest in specialised business services (25 percent). Furthermore, the number of bankruptcies rose year-on-year in the sectors trade, rentals and other business services, care and real estate activities. On the other hand, there was a decrease in the number of bankruptcies in 7 of the 13 sectors.

Just as in previous years, most bankruptcies were pronounced in the trade sector (730) in 2019. The number of bankruptcies in this sector rose by 43 year-on-year. Trade is among the sectors with the highest number of businesses.

Number of bankruptcies of businesses and institutions (excluding one-man businesses) by sector
 2019*2018
Trade730687
Financial services398416
Specialised business services396317
Construction291306
Manufacturing245257
Renting, other business services233215
Accommodation and food services196210
Transport, storage183183
Care140124
Information & communication135151
Culture, sports, recreation5562
Real estate activities5248
Agriculture3327
* provisional figures

Figures published in this news release are provisional and subject to revision.

Related items