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Special Reports


How will you be paying for that? RBC poll examines sources of retirement income

Half of Canadians expect pensions to be their largest source of retirement income

TORONTO, February 8, 2010 — Half of Canadians (54 per cent) expect their pensions - whether a pension from an employer (29 per cent) or a government pension (25 per cent) - to be the single, largest source of income in retirement, followed by income from their investments (18 per cent), according to the 20th Annual RBC RRSP Poll. Yet, one-in-five (19 per cent) do not know what kind of pension plan they have.

Canadians expect part-time or occasional work (26 per cent) and income from their own investments (24 per cent) to be supplementary sources of income during retirement. Thirty per cent of Canadians aged 35-54 expect to be working in retirement, suggesting the concept of a traditional retirement is disappearing.

"It's important for Canadians to understand and be aware of all available retirement income sources in order to make informed decisions about financing their retirement," said Lee Anne Davies, head, Retirement Strategies, RBC Royal Bank. "Having a financial plan ensures you are not relying too much on any particular source of income and are aware of all of your options."

Having enough money for a comfortable retirement (68 per cent) is the most important consideration in deciding when to retire. However, half of Canadians (53 per cent) who have established financial goals feel they are somewhat short or nowhere close to where they think they should be to ensure a comfortable retirement, up from 36 per cent in 2007.

On average, retirees have a goal of nearly $270,000 as the amount of money required for a comfortable retirement, down from nearly $450,000 in 2007. People not yet retired think they will need nearly two and half times that amount, or almost $660,000, down from almost $900,000 in 2007.

Furthermore, the gap between men's and women's retirement savings goals, has significantly narrowed from a difference of $366,000 in 2007 down to $136,000 in 2009. Men had a retirement goal of $922,000 in 2007, which fell to $555,000 in 2009 while women had a retirement goal of $556,000 in 2007, which fell to $419,000 in 2009.

"Clearly the recent economic turmoil has had an especially sobering effect on men's savings objectives," said Davies. "Whereas women tend to be more long-term focused, which explains why their retirement savings goals have been less affected by short-term changes in the market."

These are some of the findings from the RBC 20th Annual RBC Poll conducted by Ipsos Reid between October 21 and November 2, 2009. For this survey, a national sample of 1,457 adults from Ipsos' Canadian online panel were interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100 per cent response rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±2.56 percentage points 19 times out of 20 of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

Your Future by Design® is RBC's distinctive approach to help clients identify, plan, and realize their goals for retirement. With the guidance of RBC financial planners and investment and retirement planners, Your Future by Design helps clients create a blueprint for a successful lifestyle and a financial plan for retirement based on what is truly important to them in key areas of life, including family, health, home, lifestyle, work/business, mind and spirit, and legacy. To find out more about how RBC can help build a blueprint for the future, visit www.rbc.com/yourfuture or call 1-866-335-4055.

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Media contacts:
Suzanne Willers, RBC, 416-974-2727
Cyndi Maisonneuve, RBC, 416-974-1757


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02/08/2010 08:43:18