Exit poll shows 37 per cent of Canadians made RRSP contributions for 2007

    But 26 per cent of contributors chose to "park" contributions

    WINNIPEG, March 6 /CNW/ - The results are in and Investors Group's second
annual RRSP exit poll reveals 37 per cent of eligible Canadians made RRSP
contributions during the 2007 tax year - a decrease of five per cent from last
year. However, 83 percent of Canadians who made an RRSP contribution invested
the same or more than they did a year ago.
    "Many Canadians seemed to have taken a 'wait-and-see' approach due to
current volatility in the stock market," said Debbie Ammeter, Vice President,
Advanced Financial Planning Support, Investors Group. "Delaying your RRSP
contribution while you wait for more favourable conditions may seem logical at
the time but it actually costs you money in terms of lost investment days."
    The Investors Group poll found 26 per cent of Canadians said they chose
to "park" their RRSP contributions this year by investing in short term and
typically low risk, low return vehicles such as bonds and money market funds.
    Experts agree that "parking" can be a short term solution in some cases
but does more harm than good in the long run.
    Survey results indicate that of those who tend to park funds, about half
park their money for more than a year and half for less than 12 months.
    If you have parked funds, the key, Ammeter believes, is to "ensure the
parking meter doesn't expire."
    "Parked funds are like an idling car: they're in neutral, and not earning
the return they should," says Ammeter. "Left unattended for even for a short
period of time, they're a missed opportunity, one that underscores the
importance of working with a financial planner to develop a longer-term
investment strategy."
    Canadians indicated that they continue to find working with a financial
advisor to be helpful. Fifty-three (53) per cent of Canadians who made an RRSP
contribution consulted a financial advisor, and 83 per cent of those
individuals said their advisor was helpful including 56 percent who indicated
their advisor was "very helpful".

    Regional highlights

    Investors Group's second annual RRSP exit poll indicated that Prairie
residents (41 per cent) are most likely, and Maritime residents (26 per cent)
least likely, to have made RRSP contributions during the 2007 tax year. As
well, Albertans (45 percent) are the most likely Canadians to have "parked"
their money in short-term investments, while Quebec residents were the least
likely (17 percent).

    The Harris Decima data were gathered between March 1st and March 3rd,
2008, through Decima teleVox. Results are based on a sample of 847 Canadians
and the corresponding margin of error is 3.4%, 19 times out of 20.

    Investors Group, founded in 1926, is a national leader in delivering
personalized financial solutions to Canadians through a network of over
4,300 Consultants located throughout Canada. In addition to an exclusive
family of mutual funds and other investment vehicles, Investors Group offers a
wide range of insurance, securities, mortgage and other financial services.
Investors Group is a member of the IGM Financial Inc. (TSX: IGM) group of
companies. IGM Financial is one of Canada's premier financial services
companies with over $118 billion in total assets under management.

For further information:

For further information: Ron Arnst, Investors Group, (204) 956-3364,
ron.arnst@investorsgroup.com; Teresa Pagnutti, Environics Communications,
(416) 969-2721, tpagnutti@environicspr.com; Michael Langdon, Environics
Communications, (416) 969-2820, mlangdon@environicspr.com

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