Canadians less generous than they were ten years ago

By Andrew Rickard | October 13 2016 01:28PM

A decade ago, Canadians said they would donate $177,000 to charity if they won a million dollars. Today, that number has declined to $69,000.

A survey of more than 1,500 Canadians conducted by Leger for Mackenzie Investments has found that people are a little less philanthropic than they used to be. In 2006 95% of the respondents indicated that, if they were to win a million dollars in a lottery, they would donate a portion to charity. In the most recent poll, that number declined to 89%.

The group aged 35-44 is the lest generous

Have time and experience hardened some hearts? When Mackenzie conducted the survey a decade ago, those aged between the ages of 18 and 24 were the most generous group and said they would donate an average of $155,000. This group is now in the 25-34 age category and they are the second lowest givers with an average of $56,000, surpassed only by the next group, aged 35-44, who would donate just $50,000 from a million-dollar lottery win.

Canadians were more optimistic 10 years ago

"Much has changed in this country since Mackenzie Investments first surveyed Canadians 10 years ago. In 2006, Nelly Furtado was on the billboard charts and the financial crisis hadn't hit. Canadians were more optimistic about their financial future," says Carol Bezaire, Vice President, Tax and Estate Planning for Mackenzie Investments.  "Today we are still generous but are much more conservative about the amount we would give from a lottery win. Volatile markets, a slow growth economy and high debt levels have likely made people cautious about giving away a large portion of a financial windfall."