EDITORIAL: Spending and owing

By now, B.C. shoppers will have been deluged with thousands of commercial messages on television, videos, smart phones, newspapers and emails. There are few places to escape this message to buy, buy, buy during the pre- and post-Christmas shopping season.

Only the rarest among us will have avoided the temptation to overspend.

The bad news comes about the middle of January when the bills start pouring in, at about the same time we pay more for MSP, Hydro and other costs.

Still, forecasters are suggesting that Canadians will not be reining in the spending and, in fact, will be growing their consumer debt at about a 4% rate, 3% more than last year, with most of it accumulated from car loans or instalment payments on large appliances.

This may not be a worry as long as interest rates don’t rise, the economy grows and Canadians can handle their debt. But the increasing vulnerability of many households is still a worry.

What do you think? Do you expect your family to increase its household debt this year? Vote in our online poll.

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