At what age will you be retiring?
Women in Quebec believe they will have to work past age 65
MONTREAL, March 8 /CNW/ - Quebecers of both genders are not optimistic about the economy and their retirement, but women are even less so than men. According to the 2011 Canadian UnretirementTM Index released by Sun Life Financial today, women in Quebec are very concerned about the economy and their personal finances. Forty-five per cent of women believe they will be working beyond age 65, and more women than men have changed their expectations about retirement (women 38% vs. men 27%).
Study results reveal significant differences in men's and women's attitudes toward retirement planning.
Women more concerned
Women are more concerned about potential threats to their financial security: they have a more negative outlook than men on inflation and the cost of food. They also tend to take government retirement benefits less for granted than their male counterparts. As a result, women now expect to work longer, in particular, to earn enough to live well (women 63% vs. men 46%).
These figures clearly illustrate how views differ for female Quebecers; on a scale of 1 - 5, where 1 is terrible and 5 is excellent, women were more likely to rate current economic conditions a 1 or 2 out of 5 than men, most significantly:
- 55% of women are concerned about the cost of food, versus 43% of men.
- 55% of women are concerned about inflation, versus 44% of men.
The Index also indicates that Quebecers' confidence in receiving government benefits in retirement is decreasing, from 45 in 2008, to 55 in 2009, and down to 34 in 2011.
Once again, women are less optimistic than men:
- 47% of women are not at all confident that they will receive government benefits at a level comparable to today's retirees, vs. 35% for men.
- 52% of women are not at all confident that they will receive the same prescription drug benefits as today's retirees, vs. 38% of men.
Women in Quebec who expect to work past 65 are more likely than men to anticipate working because they have to:
- 69% of women will continue to work because they need to, vs. 47% of men.
- 31% of women will continue to work because they want to, vs. 53% of men.
Moreover, as they age and approach the traditional retirement time frame, both men and women anticipate working longer than younger Quebecers are predicting.
The difference a plan makes
The 2011 Canadian UnretirementTM Index shows that more than seven out of ten Quebecers (77%) don't have a financial plan.
"We've been tracking Quebecers' attitudes towards the economy and their retirement and have found that there are very significant concerns about these factors, especially among women," says Isabelle Hudon, president, Sun Life Financial, Quebec. "This clearly demonstrates the need to create a financial plan. The results show that Quebecers of both genders who have a financial plan, an advisor, and an employee-sponsored plan are more confident about their retirement plans and finances."
The survey results also illustrate that Quebecers who have a written financial plan are more:
- confident about being able to take care of basic living expenses in retirement (83% with a plan vs. 50% without a plan)
- confident about having enough money to pursue their hobbies and interests in retirement (74% with vs. 37% without a plan)
- confident about having enough money to enjoy the lifestyle they want in retirement (75% with vs. 32% without a plan)
- satisfied with what they're saving for retirement (62% with vs. 28% without a plan)
- confident about retirement than those who don't have a plan (index = 54 with vs. 38 without).
Like those with a financial plan, those with an advisor are more confident about retirement than those without (46% vs. 37% respectively).
"Creating a financial plan that covers personal and workplace savings, pensions, portfolio diversification and asset protection, as well as debt reduction and budgeting, can give Quebecers peace of mind," says Isabelle Hudon. "Our index clearly shows that when people work with an advisor, it's easier to see their complete financial picture and take meaningful steps towards reaching their lifestyle goals in retirement. In Quebec, we have 700 financial advisors in more than 150 communities to help Quebecers get there."
Retirement readiness and financial focus
Other survey results show that the overall Index, measuring the confidence of working Quebecers, is down from prior years, to 40 in 2011, from 50 in 2008, and 53 in 2009. (The lower the Index number, the more negative or pessimistic the outlook is on issues that influence retirement.) Quebecers are less confident about their retirement outlook, they're concerned about their financial well-being, and only 10% say they are "very confident" that they will have enough money to enjoy the retirement lifestyle they want.
"The trend is towards less optimism in 2010. One possible reason for the drop in overall confidence is that at the end of 2009, many Quebecers were hopeful the recession was over in this country - and that recovery would be swift. While the recession did end, Canada did not witness the extensive economic rebound it had hoped for. Unemployment was still high, gross domestic product was increasing at low levels, and there were continued worries about the economic health of other countries that could impact our economy," explains Isabelle Hudon.
Taking the temperature of Canadians' overall retirement confidence
This third Sun Life Canadian UnretirementTM Index measures the confidence that Canadian workers have towards issues that influence retirement.
The national Sun Life Canadian UnretirementTM Index is a blend of confidence scores in five sub-indices: Macroeconomics (score = 30), Government Benefits (score = 37), Personal Finance (score = 38), Employer Benefits (score = 29), and Health (score = 62).
The following graphs and charts show year-over-year comparisons and results from this survey:
- Average age of expected retirement varies with income and age
- The reasons for continuing to work in retirement vary with income
- Confidence in retirement boosted with an advisor or a plan
- Number one financial priority
- Women less optimistic than men
- The main reason I will be working at age 66 because I…
For more information about the 2011 Sun Life Canadian UnretirementTM Index, visit www.sunlife.ca/UnretirementIndexResults1Q. You can also read the White Paper (www.sunlife.ca/March2011Report1Q), a summary of the main results of the 2011 survey.
These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between November 24 and December 7, 2010, on behalf of Sun Life Financial. For this survey, a sample of 3,422 adults from 30 to 65 years of age from Ipsos Reid's Canadian online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within +/-1.7 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in Canada been polled. An unweighted probability sample of the same size as the unweighted Quebec portion of the sample (n=374 unweighted) would have had a margin of error of +/- 5.07% nineteen times out of twenty had the entire population of Quebec adults been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to, methodology change, coverage error, and measurement error.
This poll represents the third wave of a study that was previously conducted by telephone with a smaller sample size. In certain questions the magnitude of the differences from prior years' findings may be a reflection in the change in methodology from telephone to online panels. However, we are confident in the year-over-year trends indicated and find them to be consistent with other research performed by Ipsos Reid on similar issues, recently, by both telephone and online methodologies.
About Sun Life Financial
Sun Life Financial is a leading international financial services organization providing a diverse range of wealth accumulation and protection products and services to individuals and corporate customers. Chartered in 1865, Sun Life Financial and its partners today have operations in key markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China and Bermuda. As of December 31, 2010, the Sun Life Financial group of companies had total assets under management of CDN$464 billion. For more information, please visit www.sunlife.com.
Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under ticker symbol SLF.
Editors Note: All amounts are in Canadian DollarsFor further information:
Sun Life Financial