MEDIA RELEASE: Personal insolvencies rise in 2016–17 with another record in debt agreements

The Australian Financial Security Authority today released the personal insolvency activity statistics for 2016–17 and the June quarter 2017.

Total personal insolvency activity in Australia: % change compared to the previous year

Debt agreements increased 11.9% in 2016–17 compared to 2015–16. Debt agreements reached a record level in 2016–17. They have reached a new record each year since 2011–12.  In 2016–17, there were record debt agreement levels in all states and territories except Tasmania.

Personal insolvencies increased 2.1% in 2016–17 compared to 2015–16. This was mainly due to the rise in debt agreements, as bankruptcies fell 5.1%. With the exception of a small rise in 2015–16 (0.2%), bankruptcies have fallen every year since 2010–11.

Personal insolvency agreements are small compared to the other types of personal insolvency. They rose 39.4% in 2016–17 compared to 2015–16.

As well as reaching an annual high, debt agreements reached a quarterly record in the June quarter 2017. However, personal insolvencies fell 3.5% in the June quarter 2017 compared to the June quarter 2016. This fall was entirely due to a fall in bankruptcies.