Canadian Consumer Insolvency Trends – An Overview

Canadian Consumer Insolvency Trends – an Overview
In Canada there continues to be a decrease in the amount of personal insolvency rates since 2008. Generally, as outlined, the number of consumer insolvencies per 1,000 residents aged 18 years or older has continued to head upwards over the past few years. This may be reflective of the ease to which individual can access consumer debt, increasing societal comfort with the use of debt, and reduced social stigma related to not being able to pay ones debts. It may be reflective of the age of consumerism and the disposable nature of the goods that we purchase. As good citizens we are encouraged to do our individual part to sustain the economy by purchasing and spending.
While the period of 2002-2007 the consumer insolvency rate was relatively stable, the 2008 downturn pushed it to a new peak in 2009. As the graph shows, the jump in consumer insolvency rates in 2009 was more that had occurred in any one since in the last decade. Since 2008, the rate has trended back towards per-recession levels.
Consumer Insolvency Rate and Volume

Source: Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy




Year Consumer Insolvency Rate Consumer Insolvency Volume
2002 3.8 93,316
2003 4.1 100,718
2004 4.0 101,056
2005 4.1 102,604
2006 3.8 98,488
2007 3.9 101,293
2008 4.4 115,789
2009 5.8 151,712
2010 5.1 135,008
2011 4.6 127,774
2012 4.4 122,999
2013 4.5 118,678



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