MP Report: Rising Bankruptcy and Insolvency in Canada

New reports are showing a significant rise in both personal and business bankruptcies and insolvencies.

Annual consumer insolvency filings for 2023 increased 23% compared to 2022, with an average of about 337 Canadians filing for insolvency each day in 2023 and over 123,000 consumer insolvencies for the year. British Columbia was again rated second in the rate of increase of consumer insolvencies, with a 26.8% increase to 12,896 filings.  

The latest report from the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy shows a 41% increase in business insolvencies in 2023 compared to 2022. These numbers represent the most significant increase in business insolvencies in the 36-year history of the Superintendent's office. 

Digging into the numbers, some of the underlying trends are even more worrisome. Business insolvency filings rose 34.7% in the fourth quarter of 2023, just compared to the third quarter, and were 51.6% higher compared to the fourth quarter of 2022.

British Columbia had the second-highest rate of increase in business insolvencies in 2023 as compared to 2022 at 65.4%, behind only Newfoundland and Labrador.  

In addition, the latest numbers from Statistics Canada show there were 44,236 business closures in October 2023, with retailers being the most affected.

As a former retailing entrepreneur, I'm aware of the struggles of balancing debt, sales, and costs while trying to make payroll and keep up with ever increasing government red tape.

Canada also had the second highest increase in bankruptcies in the G7, second only to France, as analyzed by Oxford Economics/Harvar Analytics.

We have to recognize that all these statistics and numbers actually represent people, livelihoods and dreams. Mental health and wellness for many is already fragile and declining.

I’m holding the federal government to account for their role in Canada’s cost of living crisis. The current federal government’s lack of plans to reign in inflationary deficit spending in order to bring down interest rates, to end punitive tax increases, or to tackle the housing crisis, is affecting people’s lives and small businesses.

Without a healthy economy, the trends in insolvencies and bankruptcies among consumers and businesses will surely only grow. A large percentage of Canadian mortgage holders will be renewing their mortgages this year at the high interest rate so we will see further pressures on families. 

Conservatives continue to put forward measures in the form of motions and Member of Parliament Private Members bills to reduce costs for people and small businesses. A few include removing carbon taxes on farmers, removing the GST on carbon tax (which is essentially a tax on a tax), and the Building Homes, Not Bureaucracy Act which is aimed at incentivizing more home construction. We continue to call on halting all tax increases.

We’ve called on the federal government to stop the deficit spending by stop funding the Asian Infrastructure Bank (and get our money back), stop funding the Canadian Infrastructure Bank which hasn’t completed one project and stop the excessive billions in increased federal spending on outside consultants (some of whom it’s been discovered got paid to not do any work in the development of the ArriveCAN app).   

The concerning rise in bankruptcies and insolvencies must be taken seriously.  I will continue to advocate to find solutions to stabilize the economy and bring down costs.  

If you need assistance with federal programs or have any thoughts to share, feel free to reach out, at 250-470-5075 or at [email protected].