Bankruptcy filings on the rise again
Back in Jan 2006 I posted an article discussing the Nov 2005 change to US Bankruptcy law and highlighted the fact that over 2,000,000 people rushed to file prior to implementation of this much tougher law: Link: Bankruptcy Stampede
Well, the tougher law succeded in its intended effects and the numbers were dramatically down in 2006 and 2007 (see first chart below), but the severe 2008 economic downturn has caused the numbers to slowly spike upwards again - over 1M in 2008.
In 2009, I expect this current downturn to turn into an economic depression, and with much tighter credit conditions, rising unemployment numbers, increasing foreclosures, credit card/auto defaults, etc, we'll likely see > 1.7M new filings in 2009 and by 2010 new records will be made.
Note where the preponderance of these new bankruptcy filings are coming from (second chart) - yup, the housing bubble areas - the first areas to feel the economic downturn, but these areas are merely the first wave (the catalyst if you will) to a growing nationwide economic tsunami that will hit us all in 2009.