How have Canadians' retirement plans been impacted by the pandemic?

Survey breaks down financial pain points for Canadians and asks whether they still trust their advisors

How have Canadians' retirement plans been impacted by the pandemic?

An Edward Jones and Leger Research study has examined how Canadians have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The survey found different age groups have felt different effects. Older Canadians have seen the biggest impact in their retirement savings, but are also the best financially prepared to weather the current storm in the short term. Younger Canadians are less prepared for the short-term impacts and are more likely to have been laid off or seen their salaries reduced. Across all age categories, there was broad confidence in respondents’ financial well-being, as well as confidence in Canada’s advisors.

86 per cent of respondents with financial advisors said they are confident with the advice they’re receiving during the pandemic. Only 37 per cent of respondents, though, have partnered with an advisor, highlighting the need among all Canadians.

The majority (53 per cent) of Canadians have seen their retirement savings impacted by the pandemic as portfolios suffer and incomes take a hit from layoffs and salary reductions, forcing Canadians to dip into their savings.

42 per cent of Canadians have seen their salaries reduced, according to the survey. 56 per cent of respondents aged 18-34 have seen their salaries reduced. Of that younger age group, around 30 per cent say they are struggling to pay bills, mortgages, and rent.

Around half of all Canadians surveyed say they are concerned about paying for their family’s basic needs. Respondents in the 45-54 age bracket were the most concerned. Canadians over 55 were the most likely to have emergency savings in places, and are less likely to be concerned with providing for themselves in the short term. Only 29 per cent of that age group cited concern.

Despite these broad worries, 72 per cent of Canadians say they are financially prepared to weather the storm. Again, younger Canadians were the least likely to be prepared which Edward Jones attributes to a lack of emergency savings available. One-third of Canadians, however, do not have emergency savings.