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Fewer Americans have filed for bankruptcy in 2020 than in 2019. (But the reasons why tell a depressing tale.)

Fewer Americans have filed for bankruptcy in 2020 than in 2019.

Screen Shot 2020-10-11 at 2.48.27 PMSources:
Graphic, The Economist
Data, SSRN, University of Illinois, Brigham Young and Harvard

From the research paper:

“Large businesses have continued to seek and receive relief from the bankruptcy system as they would during a normal recession, and relatively wealthy homeowners have on average benefited from the fiscal stimulus and housing moratoria mandated by the CARES Act and other policies.

“However, non-homeowners and small businesses may face financial, physical, and technological barriers to accessing the bankruptcy system, especially in the areas hardest-hit by unemployment.”