Heavy weight

Household borrowing rose in February, driven by an increase in mortgage debt, according to new data from Statistics Canada.

Total household debt grew by $10.1 billion in February, an increase of 0.3%, to $2.94 trillion, StatsCan reported.

Mortgage debt accounted for the bulk of the increase, rising by $7.7 billion in the month, up 0.4% from January.

Home equity lines of credit balances were also up 0.4% in February, the agency said.

The rise in mortgage debt in February marked the strongest monthly growth since August 2023, StatsCan noted.

Other forms of borrowing rose by $2.4 billion in February, up 0.3% from the previous month — led by credit card debt, which climbed by 0.9% in the month.

However, the increase in overall non-mortgage debt marked a slowdown from January, when borrowing rose by 0.5% month over month.