Cost of Living

Buying nothing, the 'paradox of thrift' and Canada's economy

This spring Canadians had no choice but to spend less money because everything non-essential was closed, and some are continuing that pattern voluntarily now. How much of an impact does choosing to spend less have on a recovering economy?

How pandemic thriftiness can affect a recovering economy

From trading services online to virtual garage sales, many Canadians are turning away from buying and towards bartering in an effort to 'buy nothing' during and after the pandemic. (Heidi Atter/CBC)

The pandemic wreaked havoc on many Canadians' finances — including our spending. Now we are saving like never before.

This past spring, there was a period of time when Canadians had no choice but to spend less money because everything non-essential was closed. Most people were staying home.

Even those who could afford to spend were thrust into a world of frugality.

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As a result, Canadians went from saving three per cent of our income in December 2019 to nearly 30 per cent in June 2020.

This week, on the Cost of Living, executive producer Tracy Johnson looks at how thriftiness can affect a recovering economy.


Click 'Listen' at the top of the page to hear this segment, or download the Cost of Living podcast.

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