The number of bankruptcies filed by retailers rose sharply in 2016, but not as dramatically as the number of new bankruptcies, according to a study by financial firm Bankrate.
The number increased from 2,828 filings in 2016 to 3,029 in 2017.
The average filing rate was 6.8% for all retail stores, up from 5.9% for 2016.
But the rate of filings increased for smaller retailers.
For example, for the retail store category that includes the popular Whole Foods, the average filing was 2.3%, up from 1.7% for the same category in 2016.
Bankrate also reported a drop in filings from the financial industry in 2017, with total bankruptcies down by 6% to 1,936.
But in terms of retailers, the number decreased by 13% to 3.0 million.
BankRate analyst John R. Hart said that’s likely to be a sign of growing confidence among retailers.
“The retail sector is experiencing a lot of recovery from last year’s recession, but it’s still a big industry,” he said.
“The consumer is more confident about retail in general.”