February 28th, 2011
According to a new report by a Kitchener-based insolvency firm, the average Canadian who files for bankruptcy is 41 years old, a man, and owes about $59,800 to something that isn’t a mortgage.
The firm, Hoyes Michalos and Associates, composed a profile of the average debtor by analyzing the approximately 8,000 customers they assisted in 2009 and 2010.
His name: Joe Debtor.
And the difference between him and the average solvent Canadian? Not much; the report argues that most people dealing with insolvency are “not that different than the average Canadian.”
The main difference is almost always a significantly higher level of debt, particularly of the credit card variety. The average Canadian carries $16,399 in non-mortgage consumer debt, whereas Joe Debtor owes almost $25,000 in credit card debt alone.
But the report is careful to point out that factors like divorce, job loss, and health troubles are more often the root causes of insolvency than is, say, irresponsible financial risk-taking.
Anyway, here he is: