This publication presents the methodological aspects of designing of a scoring model for an early prediction of bankruptcy by using ensemble classifiers. The main goal of the research was to develop a scoring model (with good classification properties) that can be applied in practice to assess the risk of bankruptcy of enterprises in various sectors. For the data sample, which included 1739 Polish businesses (of which 865 were bankrupt and 875 had no risk of bankruptcy), a genetic algorithm was applied to select the optimum set of 19 bankruptcy indicators, on the basis of which the classification accuracy of a number of ensemble classifier model variants (boosting, bagging and stacking) was estimated and verified. The classification effectiveness of ensemble models was compared with eight classical individual models which made use of single classifiers. A GBM-based ensemble classifier model offering superior classification capabilities was used in practice to design a scoring model, which was applied in comparative evaluation and bankruptcy risk analysis for businesses from various sectors and of different sizes from the Podkarpackie Voivodeship in 2018 (over a time horizon of up to two years). The approach applied can also be used to assess credit risk for corporate borrowers.
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