Insolvency Statistics in Canada — 2022

Volume of Insolvency Filings

In 2022, a total of 103,586 insolvencies were filed with the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB), representing an 11.9 % increase from 2021. The total number of insolvencies in 2022 has risen as compared to both 2020 and 2021, but remains lower than annual filings from 2001 to 2019. Consumer insolvencies increased from 90,092 fillings in 2021 to 100,184 fillings in 2022. The share of proposals among consumer insolvency filings grew by 6.0% from 69.5% in 2021 to 75.5% in 2022. Business insolvencies increased from 2,480 in 2021 to 3,402 in 2022.

Note that…

In 2022, the Canadian economy continued to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. The Canadian real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) increased by 3.0% in 2022Footnote 1. The unemployment rate declined from 7.5% in 2021 to 5.3% in 2022, and the participation rate stayed the same at 65.4% for 2021 and 2022Footnote 2. The easing of Covid-19 restrictions and the increase in consumer demand, along with disruptions to global supply chains, have continued to raise the price of goods and services. Accordingly, the consumer price index rose 6.8% in 2022, the highest increase since 1982Footnote 3. Over the course of 2022, the Bank of Canada gradually raised the overnight rate from 0.25% in January to 4.25% in December 2022Footnote 4 to control inflation. The household debt service ratio also increased by 0.4% from 2021 to reach 14.0% in 2022Footnote 5. In light of the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, the federal government discontinued financial supports, such as the Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit and the Canada Emergency Student Benefit, in 2022Footnote 6.

Demographics at a Glance

The increase in volume of consumer insolvencies was fairly uniform across all age groups in 2022.

Consumers aged 35 to 49 made up 36.1% of insolvency fillings in 2022, the largest percentage share of all age groups. The change in the percentage share of insolvency filings from 2021 to 2022 is as follows:

  • Ages 18 to 34: increase from 25.1% to 26.9%
  • Ages 35 to 49: constant at 36.1%
  • Ages 50 to 64: decrease from 26.1% to 25.2%
  • Ages 65 and over: constant at 11.9%
Note that…

Statistics Canada estimated Canada's population to be 39,358,123 on July 1, 2022, an increase of 1,112,015 from the previous year. This represents a growth rate of 2.9%, in 2022. Seniors aged 65 and older experienced a growth rate of 3.51%, the highest growth rate of all the age groups. Other age groups experienced a smaller rate of growth in 2022Footnote 7.

Regions at a Glance

From 2021 to 2022, all provinces and territories saw an increase in consumer insolvencies. Yukon and British Columbia experienced the largest increases in consumer insolvencies with 44% and 17% respectively. Ontario, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island each saw an increase of 15% in consumer insolvencies.

The provinces with the largest increases in the volume of consumer insolvencies were :

  • Ontario: 4409 more filings (15.0%)
  • Quebec: 1766 more filings (7.0%)
  • British Columbia: 1468 more filings (16.9%)

In 2022, all provinces experienced an increase in business insolvencies, except Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island. The provinces that saw the largest increases in business insolvencies were:

  • New Brunswick: 116.7%
  • British Columbia: 106.8%
  • Alberta: 70.5%

The three provinces with the largest increases in the volume of business insolvencies were:

  • Quebec: 415 more filings (27.1%)
  • Ontario: 293 more filings (47.8%)
  • Alberta: 98 more filings (70.5%)
Note that…

In 2022, the Canadian unemployment rate decreased by 2.2%. All provinces saw a decrease of 1.8% to 2.8% in the unemployment rate in 2022. The participation rate across Canadian provinces was an average of 64.5%Footnote 8 in 2022. Estimates indicate that all provinces experienced an increase in real GDP growth in 2022. The increases range from 0.4% in Newfoundland to 6% in SaskatchewanFootnote 9.

Industry at a Glance

The total number of business insolvencies in 2022 increased by 37.2% from 2021.

The three sectors that registered the largest increases in the number of insolvencies were:

  • Construction: 150 more filings (40.7%)
  • Accommodation and Food Services: 133 more filings (36.2%)
  • Retail trade: 119 more filings (46.7%)

Three sectors saw decreases in the number of insolvencies in 2022 in comparison to 2021. These sectors are:

  • Finance and Insurance: 13 fewer filings (-24.5%)
  • Mining and Oil and Gas Extraction: 10 fewer filings (-25.6%)
  • Real Estate and Rental and Leasing: 2 fewer filings (-1.7%)
Note that…

In 2022, all sectors saw an increase in GDP growth rate, except for the management of companies and enterprises sector which saw a decrease of -25.2%.

The three sectors with the highest increases in GDP growth rate in 2022 were: 

  • Arts, entertainment and recreation: 36.9%
  • Accommodation and food services: 16.2%
  • Transportation and warehousing: 13.5%Footnote 10

The number of businesses from these sectors that opted for filing an insolvency proceeding in 2022 also increased. These increases ranged from 23% in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector to 52% in the transportation and warehousing sector.