German consumer insolvencies surge
21 November 2003,
21 November 2003
WIESBADEN – High unemployment has taken its toll on Germany’s private consumers with the Federal Statistics Office reporting Friday that consumer insolvencies in August surged almost 27 percent over August 2002 levels.
The Wiesbaden-based office said that at the same time, the picture was starting to improve slightly for the commercial sector.
Altogether, German insolvency courts opened 7,736 bankruptcy cases in August, up a slight 0.8 percent over August 2002, the office said. Of these, company insolvencies totalled 3,021, down 8.7 percent.
The category of "other debtor insolvencies" showed an 8.0 percent year-on-year rise to 4,715 in August.
Of these, consumers accounted for 2,617 insolvencies in August, surging 26.9 percent over August 2002 levels, the office reported.
With the August figures, the number of insolvencies for the first eight months of the year showed a similar picture of a slight improvement for companies but surging private indebtedness.
The office said there were a total of 66,437 insolvencies in Germany through August, up 21.9 percent on the January-August 2002 period, the office data showed.
Company insolvencies accounted for 26,558, up 6.7 percent on the first eight months last year, while private consumer insolvencies surged 61.3 percent in the period to 21,391.
Analysts point to the figures as an indication of how more and more private households are going deeper into debt, with high unemployment - running at around 10 percent - a major contributing factor.
Subject: German news