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Boomer concern about debt reduction soars: RBC retirement study

RBC Introduces retirement transition program to help boomers address their financial and lifestyle priorities

TORONTO, May 7, 2009 — According to a new RBC retirement study the percentage of Canadian boomers who say reducing debt is a top financial priority has doubled in the past six months to 62 per cent, up from 31 per cent.

"Many Canadian boomers are juggling multiple financial priorities, particularly in light of recent market volatility and economic conditions," said Lee Anne Davies, head, Retirement Strategies, RBC. "Our study found that while boomers are focused on reducing debt, the majority (61 per cent) also remain committed to saving for retirement. To help address both these priorities, clearly define your goals, understand your options, consider how the unexpected might impact your lifestyle and develop a realistic plan of action."

According to the study, half of boomers (50 per cent) say their view of their retirement has changed as a result of the current economy. One-in-four (26 per cent) say they may have to work longer than they expected. One-in-five boomers (20 per cent) believe they may not be able to live the lifestyle they thought they would in retirement and 14 per cent say they will need to do more retirement planning.

"When it comes to retirement planning, the five years leading up to retirement are crucial," said Davies. "While saving money is important, retirement planning is also about envisioning your future and the retirement lifestyle you want to lead. That's why we introduced Your Future by Design®: The Learning Series, an interactive program to help clients prepare for retirement from a financial and lifestyle perspective."

Your Future by Design: The Learning Series, Retirement Transition is a 75-minute, hands-on workshop, hosted by RBC's Investment & Retirement Planners, to help boomers prepare both before and throughout their retirement. This innovative approach provides clients with a holistic view of retirement combining both financial and lifestyle planning for key areas in life, including family, health, home, lifestyle, work/business, mind and spirit, and legacy.

Fast Facts:

The top five places boomers turn to for financial information:

  1. Professional financial advisors (50 per cent)
  2. Newspapers, magazines or television (39 per cent)
  3. Information or newsletters from financial institutions (23 per cent)
  4. Open to advice, anywhere from anyone (23 per cent)
  5. Family or friends (19 per cent)

About the RBC Retirement Study
The RBC Retirement Study was conducted by Ipsos Reid from April 9 to 14, 2009. This online survey of 1,028 Canadians, including 518 boomers between the ages of 50-69, was conducted via the Ipsos I-Say Online Panel, Ipsos Reid's national online panel. The results of this poll are based on a sample where quota sampling and weighting are employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data. Quota samples with weighting from the Ipsos online panel provide results that are intended to approximate a probability sample. Statistical margins of error are not applicable to online polls, however, an unweighted probability sample of this size, with a 100 per cent response rate, would have an estimated margin of error of ±3.05 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had the entire adult population of Canada been polled. The estimated margin of error for the boomer sub-sample would be ±4.3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

To find out more about how RBC can help build a blueprint for the future, visit www.rbc.com/yourfuture or call

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Media contacts:
Sarah Pendrith, RBC Wealth Management, 416-974-8820
Jackie Braden, Media Relations, 416-974-2124


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05/07/2009 10:46:46