Canadians are feeling the pressure from higher costs with four-out-of-five individuals saying they have cut back on spending over the past few months, according to an Angus Reid Institute survey released on Monday.

In a survey of 2,279 adult Canadians, 56 per cent said they can’t keep up with the cost of living. Many individuals say they wouldn’t be able to handle any unexpected expenses in this environment, with 52 per cent saying they couldn’t manage a surprise cost of more than $1,000.

“Canadians in lower income households are much more likely to say their budget is already too stretched to accommodate any unexpected expenses,” the report states.

“One-third (32 per cent) in households earning less than $25,000 annually and 16 per cent in those earning less than $50,000 say there’s no room in their budgets for unplanned expenditures.”



Most Canadians said they have cut spending recently by reducing their discretionary spending (52 per cent), delaying a major purchase (42 per cent) or by driving less (41 per cent.)

The report showed some provinces are feeling the pressure of higher costs more than others.

Residents of Saskatchewan are changing their lifestyle to suit this high-inflation environment, with 92 per cent of respondents reporting that they have cut back costs.

Rising prices are also adding to many Canadians’ financial stress, with two-in-five respondents worrying if they have too much debt.



Most Canadians are concerned about higher grocery bills, the survey shows.

According to the survey, four-in-five respondents said grocery stores are taking advantage of higher inflation. However, seven per cent believe increased margins can be attributed to good management.

Statistics Canada reported the price of food at grocery stores climbed by 9.9 per cent year-over-year in July.

The price of eggs rose the most at 15.8 per cent, while coffee and tea gained 13.8 per cent.

The overall consumer price index (CPI) increased 7.6 per cent on a year-over-year basis, which is slightly lower than its 8.1 per cent high in June.


The Angus Reid Institute conducted an online survey from Aug. 8-10, 2022 among a representative randomized sample of 2,279 Canadian adults who are members of Angus Reid Forum. For comparison purposes only, a probability sample of this size would carry a margin of error of +/- 2.0 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. The survey was self-commissioned and paid for by ARI.