In mid-August I predicted that "major" bankruptcies for 2008 would reach 225 (see Bankruptcies Revisited). Through October there had been 172 such bankruptcies, as reported by Bankrupctydata.com. That implied a pace of around 210 bankruptcies, well short of my prediction.
At the time however, I suggested that the filing pace was likely to quicken in November and December as the economy deteriorated at a more rapid clip. Sure enough, the final numbers bear out my prediction. According to Bankruptcydata.com, "major" filings reached 231 in 2008.
231 bankruptcies falls far short of the 289 "major" bankruptcies in 2000 and 383 in 2001 (the dotcom bust). However, I would not be surprised to see 2009 challenge the 383 mark from 2001. In fact, if we believe the predictions of my colleague Edward Altman, we should not be surprised to see the number of "major" bankruptcies exceed 400 (see NYU's Altman Sees 2009 Default Rate Doubling). Obviously default is not the same thing as bankruptcy; however, they trend together.
Below you can find an updated list of what I see as the "noteworthy" bankruptcies of 2008 (as reported by Bankrupctydata.com). New additions since November appear in RED (please note that this is not an exhaustive list):
- AIG (insurance)****
- Agriprocessors, Inc. (food services)
- Aloha Airlines (airline)
- American Color Graphics (newspaper)
- Ascendia Brands (retail)
- ATA (airline)
- Bear Stearns (banking)****
- Bill Heard Enterprises (auto)
- Bluepoint RE (insurance)
- Blue Water Holdings (auto)
- Boscov's (retail)
- Brooke Corporation (insurance)
- Buffets Holdings (restaurants)
- CDX Gas, LLC (energy)
- Chesapeake Corporation (packaging products)
- Ciena Capital (real estate)
- Circuit City (electronics retail)
- Comfort Co. (bedding)
- DBSI Inc.