Atlantic Canadian students place the most value on post-secondary education
-- 2011 TD Canada Trust Student Finances Survey finds 9 in 10 Atlantic Canadian students say post-secondary education costs "a fortune" but 99% say it helps them stand out in job market -
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TORONTO, Aug. 10, 2011 /CNW/ - Atlantic Canadians are the most convinced in the country that a post-secondary degree helps them stand out in the job market. For this reason, they're willing to pay the costs. But, many students in the region admit they are feeling the heat. According to the TD Canada Trust Student Finances Survey, 71% feel either anxious (33%) or stressed (38%) when they think about how they are going to pay their way through school.
Despite their concerns, nine-in-ten students in the region say they are still managing to save some money (87%), with some of their top priorities being education savings (44%) and debt repayment (41%).
"Earning a post-secondary qualification requires a big investment, and it's reassuring to see that so many students are taking their finances seriously, managing to save for the future or to pay down debt," says Michelle Snow, Group Manager, Student Banking, TD Canada Trust. "We know that managing finances on your own can be stressful or even intimidating, so we encourage students to come talk to us if they need help figuring out how to best manage their money."
Atlantic Canadian students overwhelmingly feel having a post-secondary qualification on their resume will help them stand from the crowd in today's job market (99%) and they are most likely in the country to say it is vital (54% versus 49%). While 38% feel practical training at a trade school or college degree is sufficient to be competitive in today's workplace, 19% feel an undergraduate degree is necessary and 38% feel an undergraduate plus master's degree is necessary.
The challenge for many is the cost. The average cost of a four-year university degree is $80,000, and 88% of Atlantic Canadian students say this feels like "a fortune." Four in five students in the region expect to graduate with debt hanging over their heads and 41% anticipate they will owe more than $25,000. To alleviate some of their concerns, two-thirds (66%) say they work during the school year. Nearly half (46%) work more than 11 hours a week to make ends meet.
What students spend their money on: getting around, eating out and technology
Outside of staple expenses, the top discretionary expenses students face are transportation costs, such as gas, car insurance and public transport (32%), eating out at restaurants (29%), and new technology like mobile phones and laptops (11%).
How students manage their expenses
A vast majority of students pay electronically for day to day expenses. Almost half (48%) say the most convenient way to pay for day to day expenses is using a debit card; while more than a third (36%) say credit.
As they enter financial adulthood, students should take advantage of the financial benefits available to them. For instance, a student bank account, automatic savings program and student credit card are all important items in a student's financial toolkit, backed by a good understanding of how to make all these products work for them. This includes:
Using a debit card to help track expenses and ensure that students are
staying on budget. Most student accounts allow for banking with no
monthly fee. And by staying within the number of transactions their
account allows, students can avoid over-limit fees.
There are also savings programs that automatically set aside money every
time students make an ATM withdrawal or debit purchase. TD Simply Save
is one of those.
- A credit card can be a useful way for students to keep track of expenses, manage cash flow and build a credit rating. But it's important that students understand how credit works and to use a credit card for emergencies or for expenses they can pay off when the bill comes due. Cards designed specifically for students can help save money by offering valuable benefits, such as no annual fee, travel rewards or cash back.
Students want help
Nearly three-quarters (71%) of students say they are interested in receiving professional advice on how to budget, save and reduce their debt.
"There are plenty of financial tools, resources and advice available to students who are looking for advice, whether online, at your bank or through a knowledgeable and experienced family member," says Snow. "Financial literacy is a life skill and critical to your future so make sure you educate yourself or reach out to someone who can help."
For more information on student personal finance and budgeting, please visit a TD Canada Trust branch near you or http://www.tdcanadatrust.com/student/.
About the 2011 TD Canada Trust Student Finances Survey
The 2011 TD Canada Trust Student Finances Survey polled a representative sample of 1,000 Canadian adults aged 18-24, including 80 in Atlantic Canada, who are currently enrolled or were previously enrolled in the past two years in post-secondary education. Interviews were conducted by telephone between June 28 and July 7, 2011.
About TD Canada Trust
TD Canada Trust offers personal and business banking to more than 11.5 million customers. We provide a wide range of products and services from chequing and savings accounts, to credit cards, mortgages and business banking, to credit protection and travel medical insurance, as well as advice on managing everyday finances. TD Canada Trust makes banking comfortable with award-winning service and convenience through 24/7 mobile, internet, telephone and ATM banking, as well as in over 1,100 branches - most open 8 'til late and many now open Sunday. For more information, please visit: www.tdcanadatrust.com. TD Canada Trust is the Canadian retail bank of TD Bank Group, the sixth largest bank in North America.For further information:
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