Canadian bank notes are seen in Ottawa on Wednesday, September 6, 2017. The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy says the total of number of insolvency filings grew by 9.3 per cent to 140,858 last year with consumers leading the way and business filings rising for the first time since 2001. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Canadian consumer, business insolvency filings grew by 9% in 2019: report

More than 97 per cent of insolvency filings were by consumers

The total of number of insolvency filings grew by 9.3 per cent to 140,858 last year with consumers leading the way and business filings rising for the first time since 2001, says statistics released Monday by the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy.

More than 97 per cent of insolvency filings were by consumers. Despite solid jobs numbers, consumer filings rose 9.5 per cent to reach the second highest level on record after 2009 at the end of the Great Recession.

“The sheer number of Canadians struggling with their finances is alarming but the growth in consumer insolvencies and the accelerating insolvency rate is a symptom of a bigger problem: many who have amassed unmanageable debts have no path out,” stated Andre Bolduc, board member of the Canadian Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Professionals (CAIRP).

Ontario had the most insolvency filings at 45,754, which grew by 15 per cent from the prior year. Newfoundland and Labrador’s total filings grew 15.4 per cent, Alberta by 14.5 per cent and British Columbia 10.4 per cent.

The overall increase in insolvencies came as the total number of personal and business cases in the fourth quarter of 2019 climbed 9.8 per cent from the same period a year earlier.

The number of business insolvency filings in the fourth quarter were down 4.1 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2018, but up 9.7 per cent compared with the third quarter of 2019. Filings grew 2.8 per cent for the year.

The mining, oil and gas sector lead the way with a 75 per cent increase in the number of insolvency filings in 2019 over 2018. Among business filings, Manitoba was the hardest hit with filings rising by more than 39 per cent, followed by the Atlantic provinces at 38 per cent.

Consumer insolvencies grew partly because interest rates increased between 2016 to 2018, with a two to three-year lag, said Bolduc.

The household debt-to-income ratio increased to 175.86 in the third quarter, but remains below the 2018 record high of 177.82.

“If consumers continue to moderate their spending habits, this should help dampen the rate of increase in consumer insolvency filings,” he said.

But consumer insolvency filings will continue to grow this year as many Canadians have amassed unmanageable debt loads, said CAIRP.

“The indebtedness across Canadian households is likely to way on credit trends as we move forward,” added Craig Fehr, Canadian markets strategist, Edward Jones

READ MORE: Bankruptcies down in British Columbia in 2018 compared to 2017

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Bankruptcies

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Greater Victoria writer releases first novel inspired by U.S. school shootings

Dear Mr. President tells thought provoking story of victims left behind

Saanich mayor joins fight to protect local wildlife from rat poisoning after second owl dies

Mayor Fred Haynes to meet with provincial, federal pest control industry representatives

Sidney fire responds to fewer but more severe calls during pandemic

Rise in severity linked to changes in routine during COVID-19 pandemic

Saanich police see spike in excessive speeding compared to previous years

Nearly 100 excessive speeders caught since January 2020

Colwood branch drop-off to continue throughout summer

COVID-19 safety measures remain in place

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of the world of summer sports

In a typical year, there are plenty of summer sporting events and tournaments held across Canada

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Surrey mayor’s party under fire for ‘sickening’ tweet accusing northern B.C. RCMP of murder

Mayor Doug McCallum says tweet, Facebook post ‘sent out by unauthorized person’

Father’s Day Walk Run for prostate cancer will be virtual event this year throughout B.C.

The annual fundraiser for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC has brought in $2.5 million since 1999

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Senior man in hospital after unprovoked wolf attack near Prince Rupert

Conservation officers are on site looking for the wolf

VIDEO: NASA astronauts blast off into space on SpaceX rocket

Marks NASA’s first human spaceflight launched from U.S. soil in nearly a decade

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

PHOTOS: U.S. cities brace for increasing unrest over police killing of George Floyd

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has fully mobilized the state’s National Guard

Most Read