(By Balachander) Total bankruptcy filings fell 14 percent in the first half of 2012 and are expected to stay at "relatively low" levels through the end of the year with sustained low interest rates and weak consumer spending, according to a new report.
The American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI), which has partnered with Epiq Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: EPIQ) to provide the filing data, said bankruptcy filings totaled 632,130 for the six-month period ending June 30, down from 731,500 in the same period of last year.
Noncommercial filings fell 13 percent to 601,184, while commercial filings declined 22 percent to 30,946. Chapter 11 filings dropped 12 percent.
"We are on pace for perhaps the lowest total new bankruptcies since before the financial crisis in 2008," said ABI Executive Director Samuel Gerdano.
For the month of June, bankruptcy filings declined 18 percent with a 17 percent fall in noncommercial filings and 29 percent drop in commercial filings.
Chapter 11 filings plunged 28 percent last month.
Nevada, Tennessee, Georgia, Utah and Alabama were the states with the highest per capita filing rate for the first half.