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$86,392 per household: Australia’s major debt problem

·Personal Finance Editor
·3-min read
Australian currency and a crowd of people walking to represent household debt.
Aussies have some of the highest levels of household debt in the world. (Source: Getty)

Australia has the fifth-highest amount of household debt in the world, coming in at around $86,000 per household.

A new study from Invezz revealed Australian households ranked high on the list compared to the rest of the world, with debt far outweighing disposable income.

According to the research, Aussie households have $86,392 worth of household debt compared to $42,554 in household disposable income.

That means household debt as a percentage of net disposable income is a whopping 203 per cent.

Here are the 10 countries with the highest percentage of household debt:

Rank

Country

Household debt

Disposable income

Debt as a % of disposable income

1

Norway

$106,274

$43,149

246.30%

2

Denmark

$93,426

$38,271

244.11%

3

Netherlands

$87,978

$38,552

228.20%

4

Switzerland

$95,638

$43,062

222.09%

5

Australia

$86,392

$42,554

203.02%

6

Sweden

$74,713

$37,709

200.78%

7

South Korea

$56,875

$28,339

200.70%

8

Luxembourg

$93,298

$49,861

187.12%

9

Canada

$71,285

$38,404

185.62%

10

Finland

$57,249

$37,127

154.20%

Norway has the highest proportional household debt at 246.30 per cent of household disposable income.

This means people in Norway owe almost two-and-a-half times the amount of money they have available for general household expenditures.

Australia very conscious of debt

Despite being in the top 10 for having a large amount of household debt, it turns out Aussies are at least self aware.

The research found Australia ranked third in the world for being the most debt-conscious.

Using people’s online behaviour and search history, the research revealed the issues most on people’s minds.

Invezz looked at how many searches were made for several debt-related terms in each country, compared to their population.

Australia took third place with 1,165.99 searches per 100,000 people.

“Australia recorded the third-highest search rates for both ‘borrow money’ and ‘credit card’, with 67.90 and 1,097.10 searches per 100,000 respectively,” the research found.

“However, Australians appear to be a little less comfortable with their debts, as the search rate for ‘debt advice’ in the country is almost twice that of the USA at 1.00 searches per 100,000.”

Here are the top 10 most debt-conscious countries in the world:

Rank

Country

Population

Debt-related searches

Searches per 100,000

1

United Kingdom

68,497,907

1,634,000

2,385.47

2

United States

334,805,269

4,839,850

1,445.57

3

Australia

26,068,792

303,960

1,165.99

4

New Zealand

4,898,203

39,730

811.11

5

Canada

38,388,419

307,700

801.54

6

Ireland

5,020,199

36,820

733.44

7

Netherlands

17,211,447

74,680

433.90

8

Lithuania

2,661,708

9,740

365.93

9

Latvia

1,848,837

6,070

328.31

10

Estonia

1,321,910

3,960

299.57

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