Canada second highest debt accumulator out of 33 countries from 2019-21
Key takeaways, via the FI:
'Countries around the world accumulated significant debt in an effort to support their economies during the COVID pandemic.
'From 2019 to 2021, Canada had the second-highest increase in its gross debt-to-GDP ratio out of 33 countries covered by the IMF, behind only Japan. Our gross debt-to-GDP ratio increased from 87.2% (2019) to 112.1% (2021), an increase of 24.9 percentage points.
'Given that Canadian governments accumulated more debt as a share of our economy than nearly every other country in our peer group, the expectation would be that Canada’s economy fared better than others during this period.
'Despite leading our peers—save for Japan—in the accumulation of debt, Canada did not out-perform our peer group in economic growth during the pandemic. Canada had the 11th lowest real GDP growth (5.2%) in 2020 and the 12th lowest real GDP growth (4.6%) in 2021.
'Canada also did not out-perform its peer group by achieving lower unemployment during the pandemic. In 2020, Canada had the third highest unemployment rate (9.58%) out of 33 industrialized countries, and the 8th highest unemployment rate (7.43%) in 2021.
'It is telling that the United States, which also had a marked increase in its gross debt relative to the size of the economy, markedly out-performed Canada on both measures in 2020 and 2021. Moreover, Ireland, which reduced its gross debt-to-GDP ratio, also outperformed Canada on both measures and, in fact, led the group of 33 industrialized countries in the growth of real GDP in 2020 and 2021.'