Financial Planning Standards Council

Financial Planning Standards Council

October 04, 2010 08:45 ET

Financial Planning Standards Council: Are Canadian Savers Really Becoming Extinct?

One Group Stands Out With More Ardent Saving Habits, but They Are a Minority.

FPSC Shares Research Results for Financial Planning Week (Oct. 4-10).

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 4, 2010) - As Canadians lose ground on the savings front, one group, albeit a minority, stands out from the crowd: the fewer than two out of ten Canadians who engage in comprehensive* financial planning. These Canadians, according to a study commissioned by Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC), report significantly more proactive savings habits than those without financial plans, and in turn claim greater levels of levels of emotional and financial wellbeing.

Respondents of the study who engage in comprehensive financial planning report to regularly put aside money for short– and longer–term needs, including retirement, education, emergency funds, debt reduction, and home ownership, as well discretionary 'wants' like travel and leisure. These are the results of Financial Planning Standards Council's (FPSC's) Value of Financial Planning study, which surveyed over 7,000 Canadians from varying net worth categories.

Fifty seven per cent of respondents who engage in comprehensive planning said they have improved their ability to save over the last five years compared with only 37 per cent who have had no financial planning.

"As Canadians' debt levels soar, a minority is proving that financial planning can make an enormous difference in one's life," says Cary List, president & CEO of FPSC. "Those with comprehensive financial plans are saving more proactively for the things that matter to them, and are reporting much higher levels of confidence in dealing with life's uncertainties and in reaching their financial and life goals."

October 4–10 is Financial Planning Week in Canada, and FPSC is sharing additional findings from its Value study to encourage Canadians to put more financial planning into their lives, which includes savings habits.

*The study defined 'comprehensive, integrated financial planning' as that in which one's main financial advisor has provided financial planning for major life goals and events, or at least three of the following planning components: household budgeting, tax, retirement, estate planning, investing, debt or risk management.


Savings Habits:

The survey compares the self–reported savings habits of respondents who undertake comprehensive financial planning and limited financial planning with those who do no plan at all. Pulled directly from the survey report, below is an overview of the proportion of respondents who said they regularly save part of their annual household income for the following:

  Regularly put money aside for: Comprehensive/ Integrated Planning   Limited Financial Advice   No Planning  
    (n=1393)   (n=2868)   (n=2629)  
  Retirement 61%   50%   26%  
  Child's or grandchild's education (among those with children) 38%   28%   19%  
  Paying off debts (e.g. credit cards, line of credit, car loan, etc.) 73%   70%   59%  
  Buying a house (among those who rent) 21%   19%   9%  
  Paying off your mortgage early (among those with a mortgage) 50%   38%   27%  
  Travel or other leisure activities 53%   43%   27%  
  A new car 20%   15%   9%  
  An emergency fund 56%   46%   29%  
  Buying insurance 64%   54%   38%  
  Charitable donations 56%   44%   24%  
  Education 13%   9%   9%  

Savings & Investment Vehicles: Those with comprehensive financial plans are also more apt to invest in a wider variety of savings and investing vehicles.

  • 80% have an RRSP (vs. 70% who seek only limited advice; 35% no planning)
  • 43% have a Tax Free Savings Account (vs. 33% limited advice; 15% no planning)
  • 26% have a Registered Retirement Income fun (vs. 16% with limited advice; 6% no planning)

Financial and Emotional Wellbeing Attributed to Financial Planning? Among those who engage in comprehensive financial planning, 71 per cent said, "I am closer to achieving some of my life goals as a result of financial planning"; 70 per cent said, "Financial planning has helped me to have greater peace of mind"; and 59 per cent said, "Because of financial planning, I worry less about money."

"Comprehensive planning with a professional gets people doing more of the things that are good for their financial wellbeing and ultimately their lives. It's Financial Planning Week — there's no better time than now for Canadians to commit to developing a more financially secure future by bringing more financial planning into their lives," says List.


1. In June, 2010, FSPC shared results from the study revealing those with comprehensive plans experience significantly higher levels of emotional and financial wellbeing (see separate release).

2. October 4–10, 2010 is Financial Planning Week. See for more.

3. Spokespeople from FPSC are available to comment about the study. Additionally, CFP professionals from across Canada are available to provide expertise on a variety of financial planning topics.

4. See additional story ideas at the Financial Planning Week website.

About the Value of Financial Planning Study:

Conducted by The Strategic Counsel, the research surveyed the general English–speaking population in Canada (excluding Quebec) between August 7, 2009 and January 21, 2010. It was done through a national online panel of 7,383 respondents. The study results have been analyzed separately for varying net worth categories (i.e. < $100k; $100k-$350k; $350-$600k; $600k >) and designed to eliminate net worth as an influencing variable while evaluating the impact of financial planning.

About Financial Planning Week: Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) has declared October 4–10 as "Financial Planning Week" as part of an ongoing campaign to make financial planning more a part of Canadians' lives.

The goal of the Week is to raise awareness of the importance of financial planning and provoke a call to action to all stakeholders so that we can enhance financial planning throughout Canada, for the benefit of all Canadians.

Stay up–to–date with Financial Planning Week! Look for updates on Financial Planning Week 2010 at / Twitter @FPWeek, and join us on the LinkedIn and Facebook group pages for Financial Planning Week in Canada

About Financial Planning Standards Council

Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) is a not–for–profit organization dedicated to ensuring the financial planning needs of Canadians are well served. We develop, promote and enforce professional standards in financial planning through CFP® certification, and raise awareness of the importance of financial planning to Canadians. FPSC has received ISO 17024 accreditation from the Standards Council of Canada (SCC) for its role as the certifying body for the CFP® certification program in Canada. FPSC licenses the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® marks in Canada. There are currently more than 17,500 CFP professionals in Canada and more than 126,000 individuals who have earned CFP certification in 23 countries around the world. These individuals are licensed to use the registered marks: CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® and CFP (with flame logo)®. See for more information.

CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® and CFP (with flame logo)® are trademarks owned outside the U.S. by Financial Planning Standards Board Ltd. Financial Planning Standards Council is the marks licensing authority for the CFP Marks in Canada, through agreement with FPSB.

Copyright 2010 Financial Planning Standards Council. All rights reserved.

Contact Information

    Chadnick Communications (for FPSC)
    Eileen Chadnick
    Heather Mills
    416.593.8587 x 235