The number of corporate bankruptcies rose 3.1 percent in April, compared to the same month last year, to 1,121, a private credit research agency reported, according to Kyodo News Service.

Even more, debts by those companies soared 44.4 percent to 616.31 billion yen($5.18B), a monthly survey by Tokyo Shoko Research found.

While the number of bankruptcies increased, it was the third lowest number for the month of April in the last 10 years. The number is gradually decreasing as small and midsize companies came to receive more “safety net” measures, the agency said.

The debt amount did top 500 billion yen for the first time in the last three April’s, however.

Among the bankruptcies, relatively large-scale bankruptcies with more than 1billion yen($8.4M) debt totaled 76, up 58.3 percent from 28 last year.

It was the largest over the last 12 month, according to the agency.

Of the 10 monitored sectors, six sectors saw their bankruptcy number decline from the previous year. The worst sector was the services sector where, the largest number of bankruptcies occurred for the year.