Do you need $25,000 or $1 million for retirement?



    Sun Life Financial survey finds four in ten Canadians don't know how much
    they need for retirement

    TORONTO, Feb. 5 /CNW/ - A recent survey conducted by Sun Life Financial
showed an equal amount of Canadians believe they need $25,000 or less for
retirement as those who say they'll need between $1 and $5 million. The wide
range in estimates of one's retirement savings is backed up by the fact that
43 per cent of Canadians said they didn't know how much they needed to save
for retirement.
    While the majority of working Canadians (52 per cent) expect to be
retired for at least 20 years, the survey revealed that nearly nine million
working Canadians don't know how many years they'll need their retirement
savings to last.
    Conducted by Omnitel, a division of Maritz Research, the survey also
revealed a ten-year gap between the age at which Canadians want to retire
(between 55 and 60), and the age at which they expect to retire (between 65
and 70).
    "These results are sobering, but synching up your 'wants' with your
'expectations' when it comes to retirement is achievable for most people,"
said Kevin Strain, Senior Vice President, Individual Insurance and
Investments, Sun Life Financial Canada. "Especially now, when market
volatility and retirement savings are top of mind, it's important to take that
next step and work with an expert to develop a financial plan that will help
you reach your retirement goals," he added.
    According to the survey, Canadians realize they need to save, because
three-quarters of employed Canadians contribute to some type of registered
retirement savings plan. However, beyond that, respondents didn't know how
much they'd need to save or for how long. When asked about their most pressing
retirement concerns, not saving enough money to retire was top of the list
(31 per cent), followed closely by a worry that they would outlive their
savings (28 per cent). Running out of retirement money is becoming one of the
most significant concerns that individuals have expressed about retirement.
    "Retirement is so top of mind right now, especially because of the large
numbers of baby boomers retiring or set to retire in the coming years, making
it even more important to look at the many factors that go into retirement
planning," said Strain. "It takes some time and thought to plan for the
possibility of living to age 90 or beyond, or how much you might need to save
for significant risks like health care costs, but they are important factors
which must be considered."
    Overall, the results suggest that Canadians expect to retire while they
are young enough to enjoy their retirement years, but haven't necessarily
taken the steps to work with a financial advisor to build their savings and
create a financial plan.
    Saving for retirement can be complicated - there are numerous
investments, savings plans and financial products that are available. A
financial advisor can help:

    
    -   Assess your current situation by examining your finances
    -   Set achievable financial goals
    -   Develop a realistic plan to meet those goals and put your plan into
        action
    -   Monitor your progress to keep you on track
    -   Update your plan to grow with your changing needs and goals
    

    "At the same time, there are products available today that protect
against outliving your assets. These products work similar to a defined
benefit pension plan offering a guaranteed income stream for either a specific
period of time or for life. A financial advisor can help match your need with
the right product solution," added Strain.
    The national telephone survey was conducted between January 8 and
January 19, 2008. A total of 1,530 working Canadians (working full time, part
time or self employed) were interviewed. Survey findings are accurate, plus or
minus 2.5 per cent, 19 times out of 20. More information about the survey can
be found on www.sunlife.ca/retirement.

    About Sun Life Financial

    Serving one in every five Canadians, Sun Life Financial is a leading
international financial services organization providing a diverse range of
protection and wealth accumulation 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 September 30, 2007, the Sun Life
Financial group of companies had total assets under management of
$427 billion. Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York
(NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under ticker symbol SLF.





For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Krista Wilson, Manager, External
Communications, Sun Life Financial, (519) 888-3900 x4896,
Krista.wilson@sunlife.com


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