Clients are worried, aren’t financially savvy and find it hard to stick to financial strategies

The Financial Planning Standards Board have surveyed Canada’s public – and they need our help

It would seem that the majority of the Canadian public is a little less than savvy when it comes to managing their personal finances and often struggle to make head from tail while strategizing. This means it looks like the wealth profession is safe, at least for now, with individuals seeming in dire need of financial services.
The survey, which was commissioned by the Financial Planning Standards Council, questioned over 19,000 adults across 19 different countries, 1,000 of which were in Canada. It found that almost 80% of Canadians don’t have a lot of confidence when it comes to achieving their financial goals with only 18% citing that they were knowledgeable about financial matters.
While this is bad news for the Canadian public it’s good news for industry professionals who can see that planning and strategizing services are badly needed, especially among middle-aged people who reportedly demonstrated the most amount of worry in relation to their wealth.
Cary List, president and CEO of the Financial Planning Standards Council, said: "Conflicting financial priorities and often stressful choices are a fact of life for Canadians today. There is no doubt that Canadians need the guidance of competent, professional financial planners who can assist them in determining their financial goals for today and to position them for success in the future."   
While numbers are high when it comes to those worrying about money, these results are hardly surprising as we continue to pass through uncertain economic times. While those in their twenties struggle to get on the housing ladder and find jobs, those a little older have mortgages, inheritance and college funds to worry about.
This makes the idea of rainy day savings an archaic one with few managing to think ahead and plan for financial emergencies despite 94% of people recognising it as important and ranking such funds as an important financial goal.
The desire for a safety fund is closely followed by being free of major financial debt, being prepared for a financial emergency and being free of common consumer debt in the list of important financial goals, according to the survey results.
Home ownership, saving for education and leaving an inheritance came further down the list.
Desire to accumulate savings and the fact that seven out of ten people admitted to not having ‘a comprehensive, written financial plan to help meet important life goals’ means that there is certainly a market for financial planners with plenty of potential worried individuals in need of some financial steering.
This research was conducted in June and July of this year and comes just ahead of Financial Planning week which begins November 15 until November 21.
More information on the study can be found here.