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Why are Canadian families falling further into debt?

The average measure of household debt in Canada recently hit a record 151 per cent of income, meaning for every dollar of after-tax cash, the average Canadian family owes $1.51, including mortgages, credit cards, credit lines and car loans.

But as Grant Robertson asks in today's Report on Business, "Is the three-digit number the best way to assess how indebted consumers really are?"

A growing number of economists are beginning questioning whether Canadian debt levels are being studied in the proper way. According to critics, the numbers don't show whether Canadians are struggling to keep up with their payments.

RBC Global Asset Management chief economist Eric Lascelles discussed the latest data and answered some of your questions about what the numbers mean for the Canadian economy and for individual households.

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