Personal bankruptcies fall to lowest level in 16 years

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The number of personal bankruptcies dropped to its lowest level since 2000 in 2016, continuing the downward trend of the last three years, Statistics Netherlands said on Tuesday. Last year there were a 1,545 personal bankruptcies in the Netherlands, about a quarter less than in 2015 and 62 percent less than in 2013. 

According to Statistics Netherlands, the decrease can be attributed to the fact that economic conditions in the Netherlands improved significantly since 2013. 

About 40 percent of the personal bankruptcy cases in 2016 involved a sole proprietorship going under. Bankruptcies of individuals accounted for about a quarter of the cases. 

Overijssel was the province with relatively the most bankruptcies last year - 15 personal bankruptcies per 100 thousand inhabitants. The national average was about 9 bankruptcies per 100 thousand inhabitants. Drenthe, Noord-Brabant and Gelderland also came out higher than the national average with about 10 bankruptcies per 100 thousand inhabitants in each of those provinces. Friesland had relatively the least bankruptcies with 5 per 100 thousand in habitants, followed by Flevoland with 6 and Utrecht with 7.

In absolute numbers, Zuid-Holland had the most personal bankruptcies with 299. Zeeland was the only province to see an increase in bankruptcies - 34 in 2016 compared to 32 in 2015.