Personal debt and financial access: Analysis of the NIDS Wave 1 dataset

Type Working Paper - NIDS Discussion Paper no. 8
Title Personal debt and financial access: Analysis of the NIDS Wave 1 dataset
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2009
This report provides an overview of the data on personal debt and financial access that is collected in section G of the adult questionnaire. The data generally look promising as there are relatively low non-response rates and the indebtedness and financial access measures are similar to earlier findings from the Income and Expenditure Surveys and other sources. There is some concern however, as to whether the levels of indebtedness have been slightly under-reported in lower income households. Also, these comparisons are conducted at the level of the household. This requires that the NIDS adult level data are aggregated. Given that there is no debt section in the adult proxy questionnaire, such proxy adults are omitted from the aggregation.

In section 2 we focus on item non-response for the variables in the debt section of the questionnaire. Section 3 then offers some descriptive findings on financial access by race and income. We move on to analyse indebtedness in section 4; with a discussion of indebtedness by income, race, gender and province and conclude the paper with a brief section on equity. This concluding section serves to draw attention to this unique aspect of the NIDS data set.

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