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MNP Consumer Debt Index

More than half (53%) of Canadians within $200 of financial insolvency; up 10 points since December, reaching a five-year high

As pandemic-related government aid and loan deferral programs begin to wind down, the latest MNP Consumer Debt Index finds the number of Canadians hovering close to financial insolvency has reached a five-year high. More than half (53%) say they are $200 or less from not being able to meet all of their bills and debt obligations each month, a whopping 10-point jump from December. This includes three in 10 (30%, +7pts) who report they are already insolvent with no money left at month-end to cover all their payments.

“Pandemic-related financial relief measures provided some breathing room over the last year, but now we’re seeing a reversal,” says Grant Bazian, president of MNP LTD, the country’s largest insolvency firm. “The number of Canadians with virtually no wiggle room in their household budgets has reached a five-year high. The anxiety Canadians are feeling about making ends meet — or already being unable to do so — tells us we may see an avalanche of households falling behind on payments or defaulting on loans, mortgages, car payments, or credit cards.”

Details behind MNP’s Consumer Debt Index, along with media coverage and our provincial and national news releases can be found below. To view data from previous releases of the MNP Consumer Debt Index, visit our Historical Data page.

Debt Index Results for April 2021

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About MNP LTD

MNP LTD, a division of the national accounting firm MNP LLP, is the largest insolvency practice in Canada. For more than 50 years, our experienced team of Licensed Insolvency Trustees and advisors have been working with individuals to help them recover from times of financial distress and regain control of their finances. With more than 240 offices from coast-to-coast, MNP helps thousands of Canadians each year who are struggling with an overwhelming amount of debt. Visit MNPdebt.ca to contact a Licensed Insolvency Trustee or use our free Do it Yourself (DIY) debt assessment tools. For regular, bite-sized insights about debt and personal finances, subscribe to the MNP 3 Minute Debt Break Podcast.

About the MNP Consumer Debt Index

The MNP Consumer Debt Index measures Canadians’ attitudes toward their consumer debt and gauges their ability to pay their bills, endure unexpected expenses, and absorb interest-rate fluctuations without approaching insolvency. Conducted by Ipsos and updated quarterly, the Index is an industry-leading barometer of financial pressure or relief among Canadians.

Now in its sixteenth wave, the Index currently stands at 96 points, up seven points compared to the last wave conducted in December 2020. Visit MNPdebt.ca/CDI to learn more.

The latest data, representing the sixteenth wave of the MNP Consumer Debt Index, was compiled by Ipsos on behalf of MNP LTD between March 4-9, 2021. For this survey, a sample of 2,001 Canadians aged 18 years and over was interviewed. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ±2.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian adults been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to, coverage error and measurement error.

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2021-04-08

More than half (54%) of Ontarians within $200 of financial insolvency; up 13 points since December, reaching a five-year high

Caryl Newbery-Mitchell

MNP Consumer Debt Index

More than half (54%) say they are $200 or less from not being able to cover their monthly bills and debt obligations, a whopping 13-point jump from December. Compared to the other provinces, Ontarians are the most likely (32%, +10pts) to report they are already insolvent with no money left to cover their payments at month-end.

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