According to a Recent CROP Survey, Quebec's Population Continues to Favour Traditional Investment Vehicles

74% of respondents chose to invest in an RRSP or a TFSA in the past year, while 40% did not invest at all

QUEBEC CITY, Feb. 7, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - As tax season always seems to raise questions regarding which investments offer the best returns when saving, Universitas Trust Funds decided to conduct a CROP survey regarding the investment habits of Quebec residents. Results showed that, over the past year, nearly three-fourths of Quebec's population (74%) opted for traditional investment vehicles, namely the RRSP (37%) and the TFSA (36%). However, over a third of the respondents did not invest at all this year (37%); this is particularly true for women (42% versus 32% for men). Other investment vehicles, such as the RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan), real estate investments and equity holdings, for their part, only represented a small percentage (8% each).

Average amounts invested by Quebec residents in the main types of savings vehicles:

RRSP $3,042
TFSA $3,456
RESP $1,601


The RESP: A Little-Known Investment Vehicle

According to the survey, when respondents with children consider their current financial situation, they are proportionally more likely to favour the RRSP (35%) as their first choice, followed by the TFSA (18%) and the RESP (8%). However, according to Universitas Trust Funds, parents would benefit from investing in an RESP for their children since they too will reap the rewards of this investment once their children are ready to pursue a post-secondary education.

"Even if the RESP is an investment vehicle specifically designed to accumulate funds for a child's post-secondary education, many parents are unaware that the RESP can also be a solid and secure savings plan for adults too," says Véronique Guimond, RESP specialist at Universitas Trust Funds. "The capital invested in an RESP is returned in full to the subscriber, who can then choose to give this amount to the child as additional funds for school, or transfer it to an RRSP and enjoy the benefits of both the RESP and RRSP," adds Ms. Guimond.

The survey also reveals that the knowledge of RESPs in Quebec is limited; 67% of the respondents are unaware that both the provincial and federal governments offer generous grants and incentives for RESP investments. Only 7% of the respondents are aware that the total amount of these incentives can reach $12,800* per child.

*Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) of 20% to 40%; the Quebec Education Savings Incentive (QESI) of 10% to 20%; and the Canada Learning Bond (CLB) totalling up to $2,000. Amounts based on family income. Certain conditions apply.

QUIZ: "What do you know about RESPs?"

Universitas Trust Funds has developed an interactive quiz to test general knowledge of RESPs. The quiz consists of about 10 questions on the RESP and is accessible at http://www.quizuniversitas.com/en. It is also possible to share your test score on social networks and invite your friend to try the quiz, too.

Other interesting facts regarding popular investments vehicles in Quebec:

  • The TFSA gains in popularity among respondents aged 55 or older. Over the last year, nearly 46% of these respondents opted for this investment vehicle;
  • On the other hand, nearly half the respondents aged 35-54 continued to invest in their RRSP this year (47%);
  • Only 19% of the respondents knew that it is now possible to invest up to $5,500 in an TFSA every year (whereas 36% believe that the limit is still set at $5,000);
  • Francophones generally invested less over the past year than non-Francophone respondents (27% versus 40%).

The survey was conducted by the CROP survey firm online via a Web panel, from January 16 to 21, 2013. A total of 1,000 questionnaires were completed. Results were weighted to reflect the distribution of Quebec's adult population based on gender, age, region, language, education level, and the socio-cultural values of the respondents.

About Universitas Trust Funds

Established since 1964, Universitas Trust Funds is an RESP industry leader at the service of families across the provinces of Quebec and New Brunswick. The company's not-for-profit structure enables it to concentrate all efforts on providing the highest possible scholarships. With the mission to favour the pursuit of post-secondary education through savings and scholarships or educational assistance payments, Universitas Trust Funds manages close to $800 million in assets and has paid out nearly $400 million in scholarships, EAPs and returned savings to hundreds of thousands of deserving students. To learn more about our products and services, visit universitas.ca.

SOURCE: Gestion Universitas inc.

For further information:

Lydia Juliano | Julie Deschambault
Matom Communication
ljuliano@matom.cajdeschambault@matom.ca 
514 949-1446 | 514 891-8645

Tina Fournier Ouellet
Senior Manager, Communication and Public Relations
Universitas Management Inc.
tina.fournier-ouellet@universitas.ca
418 651-8977, ext. 2320


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