There was a headline this week that bankruptcies in Canada were hitting highs last year – the highest since the Great Recession. And while that may be true, Saskatchewan was a standout in the year-end report suggesting the story-behind-the-headline is always worth a look.
Across the country, the number of people who filed for bankruptcy or sought a plan to restructure their debts rose by more than nine-percent. That translates into about 12,000 files. Interestingly, the number of bankruptcies actually went down but the proposal route increased sharply – a sign that people may be catching the problem earlier and are able to work their way out of it.
In Saskatchewan, the numbers were far smaller. The number of files here last year rose by less than two-percent….that was the best record in the nation. It turns out, we are the best at living within our means – well sort of. We actually had a big bump in outright bankruptcy while the number of proposals grew by less than one percent.
The biggest increases were in Newfoundland followed by Ontario and BC.
At a time when the federal government is talking about protecting the middle class, numbers like these suggest the current strategy isn’t working.