Most optimistic in Canada about national economy, personal finances
TORONTO, Oct. 26, 2011 /CNW/ - Albertans lead the country in optimism
that the Canadian economy will improve over the next year (37 per cent
compared to 26 per cent nationally), according to the October RBC
Canadian Consumer Outlook Index (RBC CCO). They are similarly optimistic about their own personal financial
situation improving next year (39 per cent compared to 32 per cent
Meanwhile, 50 per cent have not set aside any money for a rainy day, and only 27 per cent are confident that they are managing their
overall debt well. Still, Albertans are planning to undertake a number
of positive actions over the next year to manage their finances.
Thirty-four per cent plan to focus on reducing their debt, 26 per cent
intend to spend less, 22 per cent want to save or invest more and 23
per cent say they will take all of these actions.
"A strong provincial economy has given many Albertans a good deal of
confidence about their future finances. This has to be balanced against
better debt management," said Bruce MacKenzie, regional president,
Alberta and the Territories, RBC. "Financial planning is equally
important in good times as it is in bad. It's essential to lay a solid
financial foundation for the years ahead."
The latest RBC Economic Outlook reinforces a very positive outlook for Alberta's economy in 2011,
projecting real GDP growth at a rate of 3.7 per cent.
"Massive investment in Alberta's energy sector has contributed to job
gains of 86,000 so far this year - the strongest results ever recorded
in the province for the first eight months of the year," said Craig
Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. "Renewed
consumer confidence was visible in Albertans' increased spending."
The RBC CCO is Canada's most comprehensive consumer assessment of the
economy, personal financial situation and economic and purchasing
expectations. Other provincial highlights from the October RBC CCO include:
Major Purchases: Half (50 per cent) of Albertans have put off purchasing big-ticket items
due to the current economic situation and only 17 per cent believe that
they will spend more on major transactions (vehicles, household
appliances or spending on vacation) compared to last year.
Job Anxiety: Worries about employment over the upcoming year are less of a concern
for Albertans, with only 19 per cent feeling anxious about job losses
or layoffs (three percentage points below the national average).
The national RBC CCO release, full set of regional releases and related
comparative data charts can be accessed via www.rbc.com/newsroom/2011/1026-cdn-consumer.html.
About RBC's debt management and other financial advice and interactive
RBC's myFinanceTracker, a new online financial management tool, offers all personal RBC online banking clients the ability, at no cost, to create a set budget and track their
spending habits. Whether Canadians want to get more from their day to day banking, protect what's important, save and invest, borrow with confidence or
take care of their businesses, the RBC Advice Centre can help answer their questions. Interactive tools and calculators
provide customized information covering many facets of personal
finance. In addition, online advice videos are updated regularly to
reflect current trends and to answer the questions that are top of mind
with Canadians. With the guidance of RBC advisors who are available to
chat live, Canadians have access to free, no-obligation professional
advice about RBC products and services and personalized one-on-one
service. Further information is available at www.rbcadvicecentre.com.
About the RBC Canadian Consumer Outlook Index
Benchmarked as of November 2009, the RBC CCO is conducted online via
Ipsos Reid's national I-Say Consumer Panel. Data was collected between
September 26 to October 3, 2011, via 3,054 Canadians (453 British
Columbia, 454 Alberta, 458 Saskatchewan/ Manitoba, 705 Ontario, 516
Quebec, 467 Atlantic Canada). 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. A survey with an
unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100 per cent response
rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±1.65 percentage
points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the
entire population of adults in Canada been polled.
For further information:
Nicole Fisher, RBC, 403 292-3970, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kathy Bevan, RBC Corporate Communications, 416 974-2727, email@example.com
Craig Christie, RBC Corporate Communications, 416 974-8820, firstname.lastname@example.org