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Bankruptcy filings decline 10 percent in May

While the total number of bankruptcy filings is going down in many states, the number of filings is still higher than economists, lawmakers, business owners and consumers want them to be. For Washington D.C., a dramatic dip in filings has given the area a financial breather.

Statistics prepared for the National Bankruptcy Center say nationwide bankruptcy filings dropped by 10 percent from April to May 2011 and fell 16 percent from May a year ago. Twenty-eight percent of the nation's bankruptcies filed in May were for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Washington, D.C. posted a comparatively low 819 filings per million people. Monthly bankruptcy numbers were not so promising for struggling states like Nevada, California, Utah, Tennessee and Georgia where bankruptcies per million numbered in the thousands. Nevada topped the list with over 5,100 bankruptcy filings in May 2011.

The statistical research stated there were 135,000 bankruptcy filings throughout the country in April and 115,000 filed a month later. But, legal experts say, there is a long way to go before those declines actually fall far enough to be in a comfortable economic range.

One of the states in the worst trouble, primarily due to the collapse of the housing market, continues to be California, where bankruptcies increased last month by more than 700 filings per million.

Nevada remains, by far, at the top of the hardest-hit state list with double the average number of bankruptcy filings per state. The only bright point for Nevada is that, compared to a year ago, worse has become a bit better, but still considered bad with a filing drop of 17 percent.

Source: Signonsandiego.com, "U.S. bankruptcies decline by 10% in May," Dean Calbreath, 2 June 2011

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