Debt to GDP Ratio Quebec from 1926 to 1959

To continue with my preceding post of Friday on Quebec’s debt between 1900 and 1959, I am publishing the debt-to-GDP ratio which sadly can only begin in 1926 since the only series I have with regard to provincial domestic product begins in 1926. However, it is quite telling that in 1959, Quebec’s debt stood only at 4.64% of GDP. At the start of the war, the figure increased dramatically to slightly above 24 %. This is quite telling because it illustrates how the government of Quebec grew massively during the 1930s (it did grow as I will show in future weeks).

However, I wish to make an “accounting comment”. As I have argued in earlier posts on this blog, wartime GDP (and GNP) measures are wholly inaccurate since it is hard to assign a value to weapons and munitions whose sole consumers will be enemy soldiers. I do not consider it a good measure of  “valuable” economic output.  I am currently working to imitate the Higgs/Kuznets of GNP and GDP figures for wartime periods, but for the time being, please take this GDP series as the most accurate there is.


Quebec’s gross debt from 1900 to 1959

Computing data collected from the statistical archives of the National Library of Quebec, I have managed to get a data serie on Quebec’s real gross debt between 1900 and 1959 (after 1959, the data is more easily available online). I have used my previously constructed wholesale price index to provide the real terms up to 1919, and then I have used Statistics Canada’s series which begins in 1914. I have first indexed the two series at 1914 and then averaged the two of them for the overlapping years. Then, all that was needed was to index to 1959. So first, here comes the series of data for nominal gross debt

And now, the gross debt of the province of Quebec in real dollars (1959)