Business

Canadian market for 2nd-hand goods grew to $29B last year, Kijiji report indicates

The Canadian market for used and second-hand goods grew last year to an estimated $29 billion, a $1-billion increase from the previous year, according to a new report released by Kijiji.

Kijiji research indicates 82% of Canadians acquired or disposed of at least 1 resale item last year

A Kijiji report released Tuesday says about 30.4 million more second-hand goods traded hands last year in Canada compared to the year previous. (iStock)

The Canadian market for used and second-hand goods grew last year to an estimated $29 billion, up from $1 billion the previous year, according to a new report released Tuesday by online classified ad website Kijiji.

The second-hand goods market is worth an estimated $35 billion to $38 billion to the overall Canadian economy after factoring in direct and indirect impacts, the research indicates.

It's based on an online poll with 5,752 respondents aged 18 and older who used Kijiji and other resale goods vehicles. 

In its third annual report on the second-hand economy, Kijiji said 82 per cent of Canadians acquired or disposed of at least one item last year.

Kijiji also said about 30.4 million more second-hand goods traded hands last year than the year previous.

Almost 1.9 billion goods got a "second life," Kijiji said in its report, adding that second-hand practices could involve buying, selling, donations, swapping, free sharing, paid sharing, rental and lending.

"The second-hand economy goes hand in hand with the sharing economy, as Canadians find bargains and monetize their existing assets," said Kijiji general manager Matt McKenzie in a release.

"Canadians earned an average of $1,037 from second-hand sales, while buyers of second-hand goods saved an average of $843 last year."

He said respondents to the survey commissioned by Kijiji indicated their top use for that money was for day-to-day expenses like gas, groceries and rent.

The report also says about one-quarter of transactions in the second-hand economy — 23.7 per cent last year, down from 25.6 per cent in 2015  —   take place through non-commercial channels, such as family, friends and acquaintances.

The report said the second-hand economy moves in tandem with the overall economy, meaning the more people who are working and the higher their wages, the more they make use of the second-hand market to acquire or dispose of used items.

 "The second-hand economy is driven by the fact that people are looking for value, and for ways to help make ends meet, while also wanting to reduce waste by finding new uses for goods that are still viable,"  Marie Connolly, a professor of economics at the Université du Québec à Montréal and one of the authors of the report.

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