Record number of bankruptcies in 2004

Office space changed hands quite frequently in 2004 Keystone

Nearly 5,000 Swiss companies filed for bankruptcy last year – equalling the record of 1993 – despite the economic recovery.

This content was published on January 12, 2005 - 14:30

The French- and Italian-speaking parts of the country were hardest hit.

There were more than 10,000 bankruptcies in 2004, including private individuals who declared themselves bankrupt.

The Swiss business information agency, Creditreform, said on Wednesday that this was eight per cent more than in 2003.

“The figure reinforces the image of a struggling economy,” Creditreform said.

Taking mergers, company closures and liquidations into account, more than 25,000 companies ceased to exist in 2004.

New companies

Over the same period, the number of registered new companies also reached record levels.

There were 34,000 new businesses created – seven per cent more than the previous year and the biggest rise for seven years.

In relative terms, German-speaking Switzerland saw net growth of ten per cent. Cantons in central Switzerland, which grant companies generous tax breaks, reported a 36 per cent increase in the number of new businesses.

The number of companies shrank by 3.7 per cent in French-speaking regions and by 49 per cent in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino.

swissinfo with agencies

Key facts

Total number of bankruptcies in 2004: 10,464.
In same period, 34,000 new companies started up.
German-speaking Switzerland reported net growth of 10%.
French-speaking regions saw a decrease of nearly 4%.
The number of companies declined by nearly 50% in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino.

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