Nearly half of Canadians are within 200 a month of being unable

CALGARY — A new poll suggests nearly half of Canadians surveyed last month are within $200 per month of being unable to pay for their bills and make their debt payments.[np_storybar title=”The good, the bad and the ugly of Canadian household debt: Should we be worried?” link=”https://business.financialpost.com/investing/outlook-2016/the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-of-canadian-household-debt-should-we-be-worried”%5D You might not know it by all the alarming headlines lately, but not all debt is bad. In fact, some debt can work for you just like a RRSP. Read on [/np_storybar]The Ipsos Reid survey also found about one-quarter of the 1,582 people who responded to the poll were already unable to cover their bills and debt payments.The online poll was done between Jan. 27 and Jan. 29 for MNP Debt, which provides licensed trustee services in six provinces, from Quebec to British Columbia.MNP says the poll found that 31 per cent of respondents said any increase in interest rates could move them towards bankruptcy.Ipsos Reid conducted the poll about a week after the Parliamentary Budget Office issued a report on Jan. 19 that said Canada has seen the largest increase in household debt relative to income of any G7 country since 2000.Canadians without company pension plan face uphill battle to stay out of poverty, study findsEquitable Bank is making a splash with its 3% interest rate — here’s how they do itWhen ‘good’ debt goes ‘bad’: Why it can be dangerous to categorize what you oweThe survey also followed Bank of Canada’s decision to keep a key lending rate at a historically low level of 0.5 per cent on Jan. 20, as the central bank lowered economic growth estimates for 2015 and 2016.The polling industry’s professional body, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error as they are not a random sample and therefore are not necessarily representative of the whole population. read more