Retirement Readiness: Canadians 50+

Findings from a new study, Retirement Readiness: Canadian 50+, commissioned by the Investor Office of the OSC reveal that over half of Canadians do not have a plan for retirement savings, reinforcing the key findings of a study done a year ago.

Toronto, ON, September 9, 2016 – Seniors are an extremely important and growing segment of investors whose needs and issues demand attention. In June 2016 the Investor Office commissioned a national study of Canadians 50 years of age or older on pre- and post-retirement planning.

Among the key findings:

  • Compared to their standard of living today, 4-in-10 (43%) pre-retirees, 50+, in Ontario believe they will be worse off in retirement; nationally, this number is 40%.
  • Nearly half (48%) of Ontario’s pre-retirees 50+ do not have a plan for retirement savings. This is slightly better than the 56% of pre-retirees 50+ nationally who indicate they do not have a plan.
  • Among those with a retirement savings plan, nearly a third (29%) of Ontarians feel they are behind in their plan, compared to 31% nationally.
  • Among Ontario pre-retirees 50+, 1-in-5 (17%) have not yet started to save money for retirement. Nationally, 22% of pre-retirees 50+ haven’t started to save for retirement.
  • 3-in-10 (32%) pre-retirees Ontarians 50+ have no idea of how much money they will need to save to help fund their retirement. That rises to nearly 4-in-10 (38%) nationally.
  • In Ontario, more than 4-in-10 (43%) of pre-retirees say they are afraid of running out of money in retirement. The fear of running out of money is similar nationally (42%) among pre-retirees, but considerably higher among women (47%) compared to men (37%).

These findings reinforce some of the key lessons of the study released by the Ontario Securities CommissionOntario Securities Commission An independent Crown corporation that is responsible for regulating the capital markets in Ontario. Its mandate is to provide protection to investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices, to foster fair and efficient capital markets and confidence in capital markets, and to contribute to the stability of the financial system and the reduction of systemic…+ read full definition in the spring of 2015, Financial Life Stages of Older Canadians.

In the 2015 study, three key lessons emerged:

  1. You need a retirement plan: not enough Canadians have done any retirement planning.
  2. Get retirement advice: 9 out of 10 respondents felt financial advice in and approaching retirement would be useful. The most useful identified were:
    • How much income will be needed in the future?
    • How to avoid outliving retirement income?
    • How to prepare for future health challenges?
  3. Expect the unexpected: Despite financial planning, older Canadians were often caught off-guard by and didn’t have enough savings for unexpected events that frequently occurred near retirement.

The release of this study is continuation of the OSCOSC See Ontario Securities Commission.+ read full definition’s efforts to better understand and address the unique needs of older investors, including issues around retirement security. In June, the OSC created a new Seniors Expert Advisory Committee and has recently announced the Committee’s first members for 2016 – 2017. The Committee will advise OSC staff on securities-related policy and operational developments that impact older investors and will provide input on the OSC’s related education and outreach activities. We have also published a variety of resources for seniors including guides and Fact Cards, held outreach events aimed at senior investors including province-wide teletownhalls, and established and strengthened various stakeholder partnerships including with the National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly (NICE), Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (CNPEA) and the Ontario Seniors Secretariat.

Read the full report

About the 2016 survey

The 2016 survey was conducted online in both English and French by Innovative Research Group among a representative sample of 1,471 Canadians (550 in Ontario), 50 years or older, between June 15 and 21, 2016. The online sample has been weighted by age, gender, and province and territory using 2011 Statistics Canada Census data to reflect the actual demographic composition of the population. A probability sample of this size would have an estimated marginMargin A way to buy investments by borrowing money from a stockbroker. You must also invest some of your own money first. The extra that you borrow is your margin. Some rules apply about the size of margin that you can have.+ read full definition of error of +/-2.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The estimated margin of error would be larger within each sub-grouping of the sample.

About the 2015 survey

The 2015 online survey was conducted by Brondesbury Group among 1,532 Canadians 50+ in the spring of 2015. Canadians were interviewed in both English and French and weighted to reflect the actual demographic composition of the population. The sample is weighted to correspond to the actual number of men and women in households in each region by age of respondent. The accuracy level of results is within +/-2.5% some 19 out of 20 times for the entire sample.

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