Monthly credit aggregates, March 2022
Household mortgage debt increased 0.6% in March to reach $1,989.5 billion, an increase of $12.7 billion from February, marking a slowdown from March 2021 which recorded a 0.8% monthly increase.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, household mortgage debt was up 0.7% from February 2022. The Bank of Canada raised the policy interest rate at the beginning of March (to 0.5%) and again in April (to 1.0%); this has an impact on borrowing costs, especially those tied to variable rate loan products. At the same time, government bond yields have climbed significantly since the beginning of the year, with a notable rise in March, which influences longer term borrowing costs.
Compared with March 2021, which represented a record month of real estate activity, the volume of existing home sales declined by over 16% in March 2022. This was accompanied by a lesser decline in the dollar value of sales and still lower inventories of homes for sale. The average sale price slipped under the $800,000 mark in March, after surpassing this level in February. According to the New Housing Price Index, new home prices rose 1.2% compared with February. Mortgage debt increased 10.5% on a year-over-year basis.
Non-mortgage loan debt grew $1.7 billion (+0.2%) in March to reach $704.5 billion. Home equity lines of credit rose 0.3% (+$510 million) to reach $167.3 billion. Credit card debt with chartered banks increased 0.9% (+$727 million) in March, a second consecutive monthly increase, but balances continue to remain roughly $9 billion lower than their level at the end of 2019. An advance estimate of retail sales indicated growth of 1.4% in March, following a 0.1% increase in February.
Overall, the total credit liabilities of households stood at $2,694.0 billion in March, up 0.5% (+$14.4 billion) from February. Real estate secured debt, composed of both mortgage debt and home equity lines of credit, increased 0.6% (+$13.2 billion) to reach $2,156.8 billion in March. On a seasonally adjusted basis, total credit liabilities of households increased 0.6%.
Household sector borrowing is divided into financing in the form of non-mortgage loans (i.e., funds principally for consumption) and mortgage loans (i.e., debt acquired to finance the purchase of a property).
Private non-financial corporation borrowing
Total non-mortgage loan liabilities of private non-financial corporations increased by $4.6 billion (+0.6%) to $806.7 billion in March 2022. After reaching a record peak of $535.3 billion in March 2020, non-mortgage loans provided by chartered banks recorded 8 consecutive monthly declines followed by 16 consecutive monthly rises to reach a new record of $536.1 billion in March 2022. This form of debt was up $6.4 billion (+1.2%) in March 2022 from the previous month. Government non-mortgage loans to private non-financial corporations decreased for the third consecutive month, declining 0.1% in March 2022, as financial support programs continued to experience repayments of borrowed funds.
In terms of debt securities, private non-financial corporations recorded net issuances of $11.9 billion in March, mainly in the form of long-term instruments (i.e., bonds), fuelled primarily by merger and acquisition activity.
The mortgage debt of private non-financial corporations rose 0.7% (+$2.4 billion) to reach $348.1 billion. Overall, total credit liabilities (i.e., loans and debt securities) of private non-financial corporations reached $1,834.5 billion, an increase of 0.8% (+$13.7 billion) in March. On a seasonally adjusted basis, total credit liabilities of private non-financial corporations rose 0.5%.
Note to readers
Unless otherwise stated, this release presents data not adjusted for seasonality.
This release of the monthly credit aggregates for the month of March 2022 includes revised estimates from January 2021 to February 2022. These data incorporate new and revised data, as well as updated data on seasonal trends.
Overview of the monthly credit aggregates
The monthly credit aggregates break down a portion of the quarterly national balance sheet accounts (NBSA) by month. They provide details on lending to households and non-financial corporations—in other words, the stock of these sectors' outstanding liabilities from the debtor perspective—across a range of credit instruments, including mortgage loans, non-mortgage loans, and debt and equity securities. The aggregates cover all lending sectors, including chartered banks, non-bank deposit-taking institutions, other financial corporations, government and other lenders. The estimates are presented as booked-in-Canada to capture activity within Canada, with either domestic or non-resident lenders. In addition, amounts are reported on an end-of-period basis (i.e., the value of the stock of an asset on the final day of the month). The third month of each quarter is benchmarked to the corresponding quarterly release of the NBSA.
The NBSA are composed of the balance sheets of all sectors and subsectors of the economy. The main sectors are households, non-profit institutions serving households, financial corporations, non-financial corporations, government and non-residents. The NBSA cover all national non-financial assets and all financial asset-liability claims outstanding in all sectors and, similarly, they present stocks at the end of each quarter.
Estimates are available on a seasonally adjusted basis to improve the interpretability of period-to-period changes in debt. For information on seasonal adjustment, see Seasonally adjusted data – Frequently asked questions.
For more information on the concepts, methodologies and classifications used to compile these monthly estimates, please see the document "Guide to the Monthly Credit Aggregates."
Data on the monthly credit aggregates for April will be released on June 17.
As a complement to this release, the documents "Guide to the Monthly Credit Aggregates" and "An overview of revisions to the Financial and Wealth Accounts, 1990 to 2020," which are part of Latest Developments in the Canadian Economic Accounts (13-605-X), are available.
As a complement to this release, the data visualization products "Financial accounts on a from-whom-to-whom basis, selected financial instruments," "Distributions of Household Economic Accounts, Wealth: Interactive tool" and "Securities statistics," which are part of Statistics Canada – Data Visualization Products (71-607-X), are also available.
The Economic accounts statistics portal, accessible from the Subjects module of the Statistics Canada website, provides an up-to-date portrait of national and provincial economies and their structure.
The User Guide: Canadian System of Macroeconomic Accounts (13-606-G) is available.
The Methodological Guide: Canadian System of Macroeconomic Accounts (13-607-X) is available.
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