TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec. 7, 2016) - (NYSE:EFX) - The national 90 day+ delinquency rate and average debt held by Canadians increased this quarter when compared to the same period in 2015, according to Equifax Canada's Q3 2016 National Consumer Credit Trends Report.
Average debt increased by 3.6 per cent to $22,081, while the delinquency rate increased from 1.05 per cent to 1.14 per cent largely driven by oil-producing provinces in Western Canada and Newfoundland. Overall, there was no change in delinquency rates since the previous quarter.
Compared to a year ago, the highest delinquency rate increases in the country were found in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland, where default rates tend to be higher.
"What we are seeing in Western Canada and Newfoundland would be of more concern if people in the two regions hit hard by the oil bust were also piling on a lot more debt and they are not, especially in Alberta and Saskatchewan. At the same time, Ontario and Quebec show stability and display responsible re-payment behaviour," said Regina Malina, Senior Director of Decision Insights at Equifax Canada. "On average, Canadians across the country are managing their debt wisely, with the majority paying off their credit cards in full every month and few making only the minimum payments. We encourage them to continue to be budget-conscious heading into the holiday shopping period."
Total consumer debt (excluding mortgages) remains on the rise fuelled in part by low interest rates. As of Q3 2016, Canadian consumers owe $1.702 Trillion, compared to $1.666 Trillion in Q2 2016 and $1.587 Trillion a year earlier. On a debt classification basis, the auto and installment loan sectors are showing significant increases of 7.8 per cent and 7.7 per cent year-over-year, respectively.
"The majority of consumers are actually decreasing their debt, but those who are still increasing it are adding larger amounts on average and by enough to increase the total levels," explained Malina. "The fact is people who can afford to do so are buying more cars, spending more on housing and borrowing more from financial institutions. Meanwhile, older Canadians showed the largest increase in average debt but continue to have the least trouble making their required payments on time."
Age Analysis - Debt (excluding mortgages) & Delinquency Rates
Major City Analysis - Debt (excluding mortgages) & Delinquency Rates
Province Analysis - Debt (excluding mortgages) & Delinquency Rates
Data for this report, including scores, is 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.
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 820 million consumers and more than 91 million businesses worldwide, and its databases include employee data contributed from more than 6,600 employers.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Equifax operates or has investments in 24 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 9,400 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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