Research confirms it... Canadians save

    Recent research from HSBC Bank Canada shows Canadians believe savings are

    VANCOUVER, Oct. 12 /CNW/ - A national survey conducted by HSBC Bank
Canada looking at Canadians' saving and spending habits has found that while
there are strong regional differences regarding how and why people save, but
regardless of age or region, Canadians are primarily savers.
    Tracy Redies, Executive Vice President, Personal Financial Services, HSBC
Bank Canada said that the study conducted by Innovative Research Group "found
that over seventy percent of Canadians have some savings, either investments
or savings in or outside of an RRSP plan, and a third of Canadians are saving
on a schedule of pre-authorized deductions."
    In fact, a majority of Canadians (55%) will save up all the funds
necessary to buy what they want, rather than using credit. Young adults (aged
18-24: 42%) and those aged 35-44 (50%) were most likely to be saving on a
schedule of pre-authorized payments. While not everyone is putting pennies
away as often as they think they should (one in six Canadians chooses to enjoy
life today, and 12% will pay their credit cards off tomorrow), most Canadians
are careful with their cash.
    An overwhelming number of Canadians (91%) believe a high rate of return
on their savings or investments is important, but less than half of Canadians
(48%) check their rates of return each month, and a majority of Canadians
would choose safety of their nest egg over high rates of return (55%).
    "Canadians are looking for strong return on investments with the least
amount of risk - which is a perfect formula for the HSBC Direct Savings
Account(TM)," says Redies. "We want to let Canadians know the HSBC Direct
Savings Account is an investment option that offers a high rate of interest
and the safety that customers obviously want for their savings." The everyday
savings rate on the Direct Savings Account has increased to 4.25 per cent
effective today.
    According to poll results, Canadians' saving and spending habits vary
according to region. Albertans are among the most likely to be banking their
bucks and looking for higher rates of return on their investments, whereas in
BC, Ontario, Quebec and the Atlantic, Canadians like to stow their money away
and make safer investments. In the Prairies, they like to take a bit more risk
with their investments - whether they have savings or prefer to live for the
moment. Here are a few ways Canadians are saving:

    -   The playground of the West: British Columbians are twice as likely to
        save up to pursue an expensive pastime or sport (10% vs. national
        average of 4%).

    -   Albertans are Canada's most confident financiers, with 88% saying
        they feel confident in managing their money, and are twice as likely
        as other Canadians to put away a set amount of money on a monthly
        basis (32%).

    -   Stretched in the middle: In the Prairies, they are more likely to
        feel that they are always at their credit card maximum than the rest
        of the country (29% vs. national average of 17%)

    -   More Ontarians are willing to drive an extra 5 km out of their way
        for cheaper gas than the rest of Canadians (42% vs. a national
        average of 38%)

    -   Quebecers are Canada's big dreamers: Quebecers are two times more
        likely than other Canadians to say they are saving up to play hooky
        from work to pursue a passion or dream (16% vs. national average
        of 7%).

    -   Where your home is your Castle: The number one reason Canadians in
        the Atlantic are putting their pennies away? Home renovation (42% vs.
        a national average of 26%)

    HSBC Direct Savings Account(TM)

    Effective 11 October 2007, the interest rate on balances in the HSBC
Direct Savings Account(TM) will be 4.25 per cent on balances up to $1 million.
There is no minimum balance requirement, monthly or transaction fees and
customers can access to their account, online and through one of the largest
surcharge free ABM networks in the country. Customers can easily link the
account to their accounts at other Canadian banks, deposit cheques and
withdraw and deposit cash at over 4,100 ABMs - Canada's 2nd largest
surcharge-free ABM network, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    Poll Background and Methodology

    These are findings of an HSBC Bank Canada poll conducted by Innovative
Research Group between August 24th and 29th, 2007. The research is based on
responses from 1,292 adult Canadians who are members of Innovative Canada's
20/20 on-line panel. With a representative sample of this size, the results
are considered accurate to within +/- 2.7 percentage points, 19 times out of

    About HSBC Bank Canada

    HSBC Bank Canada, a subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc, has more than 170
offices and is the leading international bank in Canada. With around 10,000
offices in 83 countries and territories and assets of US$2,150 billion at
30 June 2007, the HSBC Group is one of the world's largest banking and
financial services organizations. For more information about the Direct
Savings Account visit

                        PREPARED FOR HSBC BANK CANADA
                       CONFIRMS: CANADIANS LIKE TO SAVE

               Regional Profiles of Canadian's Savings Habits

    British Columbia

    -   British Columbians are among the most likely to disagree with the
        statement that they are always at the maximum limit on their credit
        cards (78% vs. the national average 70%)

    -   British Columbians are more likely to report that they are saving up
        in order to pursue an expensive pastime or sport (10% vs. the
        national average of 4%).

    -   More than twice as many British Columbians are saving to buy a house
        or condo than Albertans (25% vs. Albertans 10%).


    -   Albertans are more likely than those in other parts of the country to
        say they have a savings plan, where they put away a set amount of
        money on a regular basis (32%, double the national average of 16%)

    -   85% of Albertans disagree they always seem to be at the maximum limit
        of their credit card (vs. the national average of 70%).

    -   Albertans are more likely to be saving up for a cottage or
        recreational property (21%, double the national average of 9%)

    The Prairies

    -   Prairie residents are the most likely to say the most important thing
        when it comes to their savings and investments is that they provide
        high rates of returns, even if some risk may be involved (50% vs. the
        national average 32%).

    -   Prairie residents are among the most likely across the country to
        agree that 'a penny saved is a penny earned' (87% vs. the national
        average 78%).

    -   Prairie residents are overwhelmingly likely to depend on a broker or
        financial advisor affiliated with a full service firm when making
        financial decisions (95% vs. the national average of 55%)


    -   Ontarians (42%) are more likely than the national average (38%) to
        report that they would be willing to drive up to 5 km out of their
        way to save 10 cents a litre on gasoline.

    -   Residents of Ontario are the most likely to say that the level of
        risk associated is important to them when evaluating a possible
        savings account (90% vs. the national average of 86%).

    -   Ontarians are more likely to say they always have cash on hand for a
        rainy day than Quebeckers (68% vs. Quebeckers 56%)

    -   More Ontarians feel it is important to build up their savings and
        investments than Quebeckers do (Ontarians 93% vs. Quebeckers 76%)


    -   Quebeckers are among the most likely to report not having any savings
        or investments (36% vs. the national average 26%).

    -   A majority of Quebeckers agree with the view that they buy themselves
        little treats every chance they get (55% vs. the national average
        of 38%).

    -   Quebeckers are the most likely of all Canadians to report that they
        never shop at warehouse/bulk food stores (41% vs. the national
        average of 29%)

    Atlantic Canada

    -   Atlantic Canadians are among the most likely to say that they try to
        save, but something unforeseen always comes up (58% vs. the national
        average 50%).

    -   More than twice as many Atlantic Canadians are saving for a dream
        vacation than Canadians in the Prairies (Atlantic Canada is 30% vs.
        The Prairies 13%)

For further information:

For further information: Media Enquiries: Ernest Yee, Assistant Vice
President, Public Affairs, HSBC Bank Canada, (604) 641-2973; Sharon Wilks,
Senior Manager, Public Affairs, HSBC Bank Canada, (416) 868-3878

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