The group found Canada’s household debt-to-GDP (gross domestic product) ratio had ballooned to 101 percent — significantly higher than any other nation studied.
In comparison, the ratio for South Korea was the next highest at slightly under 93 percent, with the U.K. third at over 88 percent. In the U.S., the household debt-to-GDP ratio was around 80 percent, while Germany and France had a ratio below 60 percent.
“Research points to a number of links between high indebtedness and the risks of severe recessions,” the group said.
While virtually all countries witnessed soaring debt loads ahead of the credit crisis a decade ago, most have seen their indebtedness reduce over time.
However, for Canada — and some countries in Scandinavia — this has not been the case, with OECD pinning the blame on inflated house prices.
“OECD countries that have experienced the strongest increases in household debt since the crisis have also the steepest rise in house prices,” the group said.