Personal insolvency rates peaked in seaside resorts, Merseyside and the north east throughout 2014, according to The Insolvency Service.
The government agency’s annual statistics for individual insolvencies by location, age and gender, show that the highest insolvency rates were concentrated in these areas and the south west.
Statisticians also found that, for the first time, the female insolvency rate was higher than for males – driven by the fact that a higher proportion of women than men had debt relief orders (DROs) approved. Insolvency rates were highest in the 35 to 44 age category for both sexes
The big picture
A general trend emerging from the figures is that the rate of individuals going bust per 1,000 adults in England and Wales continued its downward trend, falling from 30.9 in 2009 to 21.8 last year.
This pattern has been driven by several factors including the rapid increase and subsequent decline in bankruptcies during the same period, a rapid rise in IVA registrations from 2004 to 2006, and a sharp increase in DROs.
The north east had the highest individual insolvency rate during 2014, at 29.2 per 10,000 adults. This region has topped the rates of bankruptcies, IVAs and DROs since 2008. London had the lowest rates for each type of insolvency last year.
Many of the areas with the highest insolvency rates were in coastal resorts such as Torbay (Torquay), Denbighshire (Rhyl), Blackpool and Scarborough.
However Stoke-on-Trent had the highest number of new insolvency cases in 2014, with 834, while Kingston Upon Hull had 803 and Torbay was third with 458 new cases.
By Marcel LeGouais