BMO Harris Private Banking

BMO Harris Private Banking

June 13, 2013 11:00 ET

REPEAT-BMO Harris Private Banking Changing Face of Wealth Study: British Columbia's Wealthy Lead the Country in Diversity

- Sixty-eight per cent of high-net worth British Columbians were born outside of Canada or are first generation Canadian

- Nearly three quarters of the wealthy in B.C. are self-made millionaires

- Majority of the wealthy are over the age of 50

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - June 13, 2013) - BMO Harris Private Banking today released a study on high-net worth Canadians (those who have investible assets of $1 million or more). The study is the first in a series being released by BMO Harris Private Banking over the next year that examines trends among the wealthy across North America. According to the report, diversity reigns among the wealthy in B.C. with 68 per cent stating that they are "new Canadians" having either immigrated to Canada themselves or having at least one parent born outside of the country.

"There has been tremendous growth taking place in B.C. in recent years and the province's Asian community has played an integral part in helping in the growth and development of the province," said Jennifer Muench, Vice-President and Managing Director, BMO Harris Private Banking, British Columbia. "This study reinforces the fact that British Columbia provides Canadians, regardless of where they came from or their race, with the opportunity to work hard and prosper."

Additional B.C. highlights from the inaugural study include:

  • Seventy-four per cent of British Columbians are self-made, generating the majority of their wealth themselves.
  • Nearly half (49 per cent) have investable assets of $2 million or more, making the high-net worth in B.C. the most wealthy group in Canada.
  • More than 4 in 10 (43 per cent) have completed a graduate or professional degree. Just 11 per cent reported that they have completed high school or less.

Key National Findings:

On a national level, the study found the following:

  • Two-thirds (67 per cent) of high-net worth Canadians are self-made millionaires, making their wealth on their own. Only one-in-five (20 per cent) attribute at least part of their wealth to an inheritance.
  • Women make up one-third of Canada's affluent, up from 21 per cent three years ago.
  • Almost half (48 per cent) are either immigrants to Canada (24 per cent), or describe themselves as first generation Canadians with at least one parent born outside of Canada (24 per cent).
  • Education is a big indicator of wealth with 80 per cent of high-net worth Canadians possessing at least a university degree and 46 per cent a graduate or professional degree; 10 per cent have a technical, trade or apprenticeship degree and just 9 per cent hold only a high school diploma or less.

Regional Breakdown:

Region Percentage
who are
who are new
who are women
National 67 48 32
Atlantic 83 46 37
Quebec 64 44 24
Ontario 64 45 36
Alberta 72 44 36
British Columbia 74 68 26

The online survey was conducted by Pollara between March 28th and April 11th, 2013 with a sample of 305 Canadian adults who have $1M+ in investable assets (including a sub-sample of 47 British Columbians). The margin of error for a probability sample of this size is ± 5.6%, 19 times out of 20.

About BMO Harris Private Banking

Backed by the stability and resources of BMO Financial Group, professionals at BMO Harris Private Banking are responsible for the successful management of wealth by providing expert advice and highly personalized services in banking, investment management, estate, trust, succession planning and philanthropic services - all with a coordinated and confident approach. With 34 offices across Canada, including Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver, BMO Harris Private Banking is able to service clients in a variety of languages.

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