Nearly half of Canadians say they don’t expect to be able to cover basic living expenses without taking on more debt, according to a new survey from MNP.
The report says Canadians find themselves with less money each month, more than half concerned about their ability to repay debts.
After paying all their current bills and debt obligations, Canadians have $557 left at the end of the month on average — a drop of $142 since June and the lowest level since tracking began in February 2016.
Nearly half say they are left with less than $200, including three in 10 who say they already don’t make enough money to cover all their bills and debt obligations.
The findings are part of the latest MNP Consumer Debt Index conducted quarterly by Ipsos. Now in its tenth wave, the Index tracks Canadians’ attitudes about their consumer debt and perception of their ability to meet monthly payment obligations.
“Household debt has eased marginally and the current holding pattern on interest rates may be giving Canadians a sense of optimism about their finances,” said Grant Bazian, president of MNP Ltd. “Our research shows that most households do not have enough cash for inevitable life events like a car repair.”
The new anecdotal evidence of tight household finances comes ahead of a policy announcement by the Bank of Canada on Wednesday that will break a prolonged period of silence on monetary policy.