The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy Canada has released its insolvency statistics for January 2011. The number of consumer insolvencies for January 2011 (5,864) was the lowest since December 2007 (when there were 5,192) and the lowest figure for the month of January since January 2000 (when there were 5,451).

Here’s the long term graph for consumer insolvencies (aka personal bankruptcies) going back to the beginning of 1991:

A closer view looking just since the period immediately preceding the recession:

For the same period (January 2007 to present) the decrease is bankruptcies is not matched by a decrease in proposals (the number of proposals actually increased from the prior month from 3,219 to 3,342).

The implications of this? I’m not sure if there’s any data on what proportion of proposals eventually end up as bankruptcies, but the increasing number of proposals seems to mitigate some of the gain from the decrease in actual bankruptcies.

For businesses the trend continues to be a bit different, with proposals decreasing along with bankruptcies, though decreasing at a much lesser rate.