80 per cent of Canadians shifting financial priorities due to pandemic uncertainty

·4 min read

Canadians are focusing on stability of retirement savings, stable income, and short-term cash flow more now than compared to before the pandemic, Investment Planning Counsel's survey found.

TORONTO, Oct. 26, 2020 /CNW/ - Investment Planning Counsel today released a study that gives insights into how financial priorities for Canadian investors have shifted amid the pandemic. Results show that 8 in 10 Canadian investors re-evaluated their priorities since the onset of the pandemic with close to 50 per cent reporting that stability of income, short-term cash flows, and the health of their retirement savings have become more important.

Investment Planning Counsel Inc. Logo (CNW Group/Investment Planning Counsel Inc.)
Investment Planning Counsel Inc. Logo (CNW Group/Investment Planning Counsel Inc.)

The study, that was conducted in partnership with Environics Research, also revealed that while Canadians are looking for ways to buffer against future uncertainty, they are also leaning on financial experts more for guidance:

  • While many investors still feel positive about their future, 20 per cent have modified a life-long goal as they feel it is now unattainable;

  • 74 per cent of respondents agreed that to be financially successful in the future they need to seek financial advice;

  • 40 per cent of investors say that compared to six months ago they are placing more importance on job stability;

  • Almost 40 per cent are concerned they will outlive their money; and

  • 30 per cent are more concerned with timelines for purchases over $10,000.

"Canadians have gone through a lot this year, so it's no surprise that they are taking a hard look at their financial health and rethinking their priorities," said Chris Reynolds, President and CEO of Investment Planning Counsel. "Long-term planning will always be important, but with the sudden unplanned changes to personal or family circumstances, planning cycles will become shorter. As such, Canadians will want to engage more frequently with their advisor to reevaluate their plans and get advice."

The need for professional advice has been greater during the pandemic with one in three Canadian investors saying they've increased the frequency of communication with their advisor. Parallel to the change in the demand for advice is how investors want to access advice. When choosing an advisor, 93 per cent of respondents indicated that it is important for them to work with an advisor who knows their personal situation while a significant 60 per cent said the ability to connect with their advisor through remote or virtual channels is increasingly more important.

"With the drastic shift in our environment, investors want to work with an advisor who knows their personal circumstances and they want the ability to access advice easily," said Sam Febbraro, Executive Vice President, Advisor Services of Investment Planning Counsel.

By using digital technologies, advisors can meet a client on their terms while still providing in-depth advice and delivering an interactive planning experience, he added. Mr. Febbraro concluded by noting that "as Canadians take a look at their priorities, financial advisors play a critical role in providing the necessary guidance to help them make the right decisions for their short- and long-term goals."

About Investment Planning Counsel
Investment Planning Counsel Inc. (IPC) is an integrated wealth management company founded in 1996. IPC supports Advisors in delivering a distinctive client service experience by providing client-focused advice that helps Canadians live their dreams. With $27.5 billion in assets under administration, IPC is a member of the IGM Financial Inc. (TSX: IGM) group of companies. IPC Private Wealth is a program offered by IPC Securities Corporation, a subsidiary of Investment Planning Counsel.

About the Environics Research Survey
This study was conducted with an online sample of a total 1,000 Canadian investors with $100,000 or more in investible assets that are over 30 years old. They also identified as having primary or shared responsibility in making financial and investment decisions. The results were split between 700 respondents working with a financial advisor, 93 with an online investment management platform and 207 on a customer service representative or financial planner at a bank. The survey was conducted between August 13– August 27, 2020. Results from a probability sample of this size could be considered accurate to within ±3.10 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Results have been weighted based on age, gender and region to be representative of the Canadians population.

SOURCE Investment Planning Counsel Inc.

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