Frankfurt / Neuss (dpa / lno) - The number of company bankruptcies in Germany has fallen to its lowest level since the early 1990s despite the Corona crisis.

The significant decrease in company bankruptcies by 13.4 percent to an estimated 16,300 (previous year: 18,830) cases, however, "hide the real situation of companies," said the credit agency Creditreform on Tuesday.

With 46 insolvencies per 10,000 companies, Schleswig-Holstein currently ranks in the middle.

The value fluctuates between 30 in Thuringia and 98 in Bremen.

In the previous year, there were 68 insolvencies per 10,000 companies in Schleswig-Holstein.

State aid and relief in insolvency law eased the situation in 2020. “The recession is having a massive impact on the liquidity and financial situation, particularly for the catering, retail trade, and the trade fair, travel and event industries.

This will be reflected in the insolvency figures from next year on, ”predicted Creditreform.


An explanation for the low numbers in the past year: The legislature has suspended the obligation to file for insolvency for companies since March 1, 2020.

In other words, companies that are in distress due to the Corona crisis have not been obliged to file for bankruptcy since then.

This special regulation applies until the end of 2020. However, only for companies that are over-indebted, not in the event of insolvency.

The last time there was a lower level of corporate insolvencies was 1993 with 15 150 cases.

Despite the lower number of cases, the amount of damage for the creditors increased significantly from 23.5 billion euros in 2019 to an estimated 34 billion euros in the current year.

This was due to the fact that a relatively large number of large companies began to falter.

Among them: the last large German department store group Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof, several fashion retailers (Esprit, Hallhuber, Bonita), Germany's largest hairdressing chain Klier, the restaurant chain Vapiano and the payment service provider Wirecard, which deals with falsification of accounts and accusations of fraud, public prosecutors and Berlin politics.

As before, however, it is mainly smaller companies that are affected: in four out of five cases (80.1 percent) the company concerned had a maximum of five employees.

According to calculations by Creditreform, around 332,000 jobs are threatened or have already been lost as a result of this year's corporate insolvencies.


Creditreform also expects the number of consumer bankruptcies to rise again next year.

In 2020, the number fell by a good quarter to 45,800 cases.

Creditreform on insolvencies 2020

Creditreform on insolvencies 2019


Federal Office on Insolvencies 1st Half of 2020

Federal Ministry of Justice on the obligation to file for insolvency 2.9.2020

Federal Statistical Office on GDP

Federal Employment Agency on short-time allowance

Insolvency trend IWH December 3rd, 2020

Crifbürgel bankruptcy forecast

Insolvency forecast Euler Hermes July 2020


Business survey ifo Institute 1.12.2020

Analysis of Deutsche Bank Research on insolvencies 08/2020