Personal Bankruptcy Rate Drops: What's Next?

KITCHENER, ON, Jan. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy reports that 124,886 Canadians filed either a personal bankruptcy or a consumer proposal in the twelve months ended October 31, 2011, a significant decrease from 2010. Nationally, personal insolvency filings decreased by 8.1 %. In Ontario the decrease was 11.2%.

"The decreasing bankruptcy rate is great news for Canadians, as the economy appears to be improving, and unemployment remains moderate" says Douglas Hoyes, a bankruptcy trustee with Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.

Another encouraging sign is that Canadians are increasingly choosing to file consumer proposals as an alternative to bankruptcy.  While personal bankruptcy filings decreased by 16.7%, 14.2%, and 15% over the last three months, consumer proposal filings have increased by 7.4%, 7.0%, and 7.4%.

"Consumer proposals allow the hard-pressed consumer the ability to negotiate settlements with their creditors, a win-win for everyone" says Ted Michalos, a bankruptcy trustee with Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.

The unemployment rate in Canada dropped to a multi-year low of 7.1% in October, coinciding with the large decrease in personal bankruptcies, however the unemployment rate has increased each month since then, and now stands at 7.5%.  Continued increases in unemployment will put further pressure on Canadians' finances, so it is very likely that the number of consumer insolvencies will begin to increase in 2012.

Hoyes, Michalos recommends that all Canadians take immediate steps to reduce debt to increase their ability to deal with potential future increases in interest rates and unemployment.  To assist in this process, information on budgeting and money management is available at .

SOURCE Hoyes, Michalos

For further information:

Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc., a trustee in bankruptcy firm with offices throughout Ontario, helps people in financial difficulty.  Further information can be found at .
Contacts:     Douglas Hoyes, CA, Trustee in Bankruptcy,
Ted Michalos, CA, Trustee in Bankruptcy,
310-PLAN (310-7526, no area code required) or 1-866-747-0660


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