One-third of Canadians would fail financial stress test

By The IJ Staff | October 31 2018 01:30PM

Photo: Freepik

A national survey commissioned by the Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) reveals that one in three Canadians (33%) would fail the financial stress test – meaning they somewhat or strongly doubt their bank account would withstand a financial emergency such as a car repair or emergency vet bill.

The FPSC Cross-Country Checkup, a Leger poll of 1,527 Canadians, released during Financial Planning Week, also examines how likely people are to engage professional financial planning guidance.

The poll shows that nearly three in 10 Canadians are not confident they will achieve their financial life goals (28%).

Many Canadians without matching savings plans from employers

It also shows that nearly two-thirds of Canadians (64%) do not have access to an employer retirement savings matching program. Atlantic Canadians have the least access (71%) while 57% of those surveyed in Quebec say they do have access.

Despite these trends, two-thirds of Canadians have not engaged the services of a professional financial planner (65%). That number is highest in Atlantic Canada (76%) and Quebec (73%) and lowest in Alberta (57%) and British Columbia (58%).

There are several reasons that Canadians cite for not seeking out the services of a professional financial planner, with the primary misconception being that they feel their portfolio is too small to engage a planner (50%); they don’t know who to trust (22%); it’s too confusing and overwhelming (20%) and 19% said they are embarrassed by their financial situation.

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