TORONTO — Credit rating agency Equifax Canada says total consumer debt increased 2.8 per cent to $1.99 trillion in the second quarter amid a strong recovery in the housing market.
Rising mortgage balances pushed average debt per person to $73,532, up 2.2 per cent from a year ago.
However, non-mortgage debt decreased three per cent nationally to $23,035 as credit cards, auto loans and lines of credit were impacted by shutdowns in most regions of the country.
Credit card spending started to rise in June with those not using a payment deferral on their cards effectively back to pre-COVID levels by the end of the quarter.
About three million consumers used COVID-related payment deferrals at some point since February, with the 35- to 44-year-old age group relying most on the help while seniors were least likely to seek help.
The delinquency rate — the percentage of balances where credit users have missed at least three payments — was 1.24 per cent nationally, up 10.6 per cent from a year ago.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 3, 2020.
The Canadian Press