Retail sales unexpectedly fall last December
TORONTO, ONTARIO, February 22, 2017 – New retail sales numbers from Statistics Canada suggests Canadians may have too much debt and have had enough with taking on new debt during the holiday season.
Retail sales in Canada dropped 0.5 per cent according to Statistics Canada for December 2016.
This decline was a surprise given the performance of retail sales in the months prior to the largely anticipated holiday shopping season. Could this mean the debt loads of Canadians have finally caught up with them? Maybe the burden of living paycheque to paycheque and carrying a heavy mortgage was the last straw for many Canadians.
“Canadians are carrying record levels of debt and for some consumers they may be beyond their breaking point with their debt management. The reality is, if you have to decide between paying your bills or buying gifts, you should choose the former,” says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada.
“With many Canadians at or beyond their tipping point with debt, they may not have been able to shop-and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.” says Schwartz.
The Statistics Canada report also noted declines in popular shopping categories including:
- Clothing and clothing accessories stores dropped -3.7 per cent
- Jewellery, luggage and leather goods stores declined -12.4 per cent
- Electronics and appliance stores dipped -2.3 per cent
- Sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores fell 0.5 per cent
For consumers who are struggling with too much debt and to stay on top of it all, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada offers the following:
Pay yourself first!
Creating a small savings account is better than not having one. Even putting away a small amount of money can help you to break the cycle of debt. Remember every little bit helps.
No new debt!
It feels nice to buy new items with your credit card however when the bill comes, you do not want to experience the added heartache. So say no to new debt. Resist the temptation of increasing your credit limit or applying for new credit.
Understand your needs vs. wants
It’s time to get a strong hold on your spending. Learn to say no to yourself. Don’t be tempted to buy things you do not absolutely need.
Budget your life
Track all of your spending in a monthly budget. Spend less money than you take home. Do not feel the need to spend like a rock star when you are not one. Learning to live within your means can be a matter of living a life in debt or not.
Help me please!
When there is too much debt handle all by yourself and you are losing sleep over your growing debt load – seek help from a trained credit counsellor. A credit counsellor can help you sleep at night again.
About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.:
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance.
For more information or to request an interview with Jeffrey Schwartz, please contact:
Natasha Carr, Community and Public Relations Manager,
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.,
T: 416-915-7283 ext.1041, C: 416-830-4720, F: 416-915-5200, E: [email protected]