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Working Paper 185


Our goal is thus to establish a benchmark level of the U.S. bankruptcy rates after 2005 that likely would have been observed, if the law had not changed. We then compare the actual U.S. bankruptcy rate to the benchmark for 2007 to provide a sense of the effectiveness of BAPCPA. We proceed in three steps. We first analyze if there was a structural break in the U.S. bankruptcy rate in 2005 or 2006. Second, we analyze if the level of the U.S. bankruptcy rate shifted, the trend growth rate changed, or both level and trend changed after the break. Third, we forecast the U.S. bankruptcy rates for 2007 based on a forecasting model derived from data observed before the break and compare the actual U.S. bankruptcy rates to the predicted U.S. bankruptcy rates.


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