Personal insolvencies dropped by 11.3% last year compared to 2010’s figures.
In total, some 119,850 individual cases were recorded in England and Wales, according to the Insolvency Service’s figures published today.
Bankruptcies (41,845) registered the steepest drop, plummeting by some 29.3% while Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVAS) (49,056) also followed suit by falling 3.2%.
But Debt Relief Orders (DROs) (28,949) jumped up 15% on the previous year.
Yet managing director of advice agency, The Debt Advisor, Bev Budsworth, welcomed the overall fall in personal insolvencies.
She said: “It’s great to see that bankruptcies are continuing to decline with figures nearly a third down on the same point last year.
“It’s also encouraging to see (IVAs) are continuing to be utilised with numbers climbing steadily throughout the year.
“UK consumer debt declined by £9 billion to £207 billion in 2011 with UK personal debt declining by £1 billion.
“Personal insolvencies continue to head in the right direction but financial pressures are still huge for the average man on the street.”
Meanwhile, credit reference agency Experian, found ‘middle-class suburbanites’ saw the biggest increase in their share of UK insolvencies last year.
According to the agency’s figures, this group – which includes mainly married or middle-aged people, with children, accounted for 10.93% of personal insolvencies – up from 10.37% in 2010.
Simon Waller, head of Customer Management and Collections for Experian UK and Ireland, added: “Whilst it is encouraging to see that personal insolvencies are declining throughout the UK, there are still pockets of society where financial stress has increased in 2011.
“Redundancy and relationship breakdown are typically the main reasons for why people to experience serious financial difficulties.”
According to money charity Credit Action, the average household debt – not including mortgage payments – was some £7,900 in December 2011.