TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 10, 2016) - Following the Bank of Canada's interest rate announcement, Equifax Canada reports that delinquency rates remain at historic lows in its Q4 2015 National Consumer Credit Trends Report. When compared to the same quarter from a year ago, the 90+ delinquency rate (excluding mortgages) was unchanged at 1.09 per cent.
Delinquency rates stand as a measure on the ability to pay back loans and credit card debt, which varies across the country. Oil-producing Western provinces such as Alberta and Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador in the Eastern region are currently trending upwards, especially over the past three quarters. As it stands now though, provinces in the Western region still have the lowest delinquency rates, while provinces in the Eastern region have the highest.
"Despite the ups and downs of today's economy we're seeing that Canadians are generally able to manage debt and rein in spending when they have to," said Regina Malina, Senior Director of Decision Insights at Equifax Canada. "It may be a surprise to some, but the fact is delinquency rates in the oil-producing provinces are still relatively low. Most people are still finding a way to pay back what they owe."
In the final quarter of 2015, the delinquency rate for younger customers (under 26) was the only age category to experience an increase, rising by 2.9 per cent, which is already higher than any other age group. At the same time, the 65+ segment continued to increase debt faster than any other age group, while keeping delinquency low.
Debt is often used as a tool for consumers to accomplish their objectives. However, as people get older, their income earning capabilities generally trend downward. To increase their financial security, Canadians should develop a plan to pay off their debt within a set timeframe.
Total reported consumer debt is now at $1.621 trillion, compared to $1.587 trillion in Q3 2015 and $1.529 trillion a year ago, which represents an increase of 2.14 per cent and 6.00 per cent. On a debt classification basis, the installment loan and auto loan sectors showed significant increases of 7.5% and 5.7% year-over-year, respectively. The average consumer debt is $21,458.
Major City Analysis - Debt (excluding mortgages) & Delinquency Rates
Province Analysis - Debt (excluding mortgages) & Delinquency Rates
National Credit Card accounts, balances and limits continued to increase when compared to the same quarter last year. Average credit card limits have increased for seven consecutive quarters, while utilization is unchanged.
Data for this report, including scores, are sourced from Equifax Canada, the repository of the majority of credit transactions that occur in Canada. There are over 25 million unique Equifax consumer credit files. Transaction volumes for data are estimated at 105 million per month. Information provided in this report was adjusted to ensure that quarterly data reflects the results as of the last month of each quarter.
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Equifax powers the financial future of individuals and organizations around the world. Using the combined strength of unique trusted data, technology and innovative analytics, Equifax has grown from a consumer credit company into a leading provider of insights and knowledge that helps its customers make informed decisions. The company organizes, assimilates and analyzes data on more than 800 million consumers and more than 88 million businesses worldwide, and its databases include employee data contributed from more than 5,000 employers.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Equifax operates or has investments in 21 countries in North America, Central and South America, Europe and the Asia Pacific region. It is a member of Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500® Index, and its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. Equifax employs approximately 9,200 employees worldwide.
Some noteworthy achievements for the company include: Ranked 13 on the American Banker FinTech Forward list (2015); named a Top Technology Provider on the FinTech 100 list (2004-2015); named an InformationWeek Elite 100 Winner (2014-2015); named a Top Workplace by Atlanta Journal Constitution (2013-2015); named one of Fortune's World's Most Admired Companies (2011-2015); named one of Forbes' World's 100 Most Innovative Companies (2015). For more information, visit www.equifax.com.
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