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Reshaping the investment conversation: Millennials, Gen Xers, Boomers and Retirees exchanging investment advice and ideas in social media space

RBC Direct Investing’s Community connecting “people like me”


TORONTO, August 19, 2014 -  About a year into its life, RBC Direct Investing’s Community – an online discussion portal and a Canadian online “first” – is proving popular with everyone from Millennials to retirees who want to manage their own investments, while also drawing upon the experiences of other self-directed investors at the same time.

Community was created in early 2013 to meet the needs of investors who are increasingly looking to social channels to connect with “people like me.” Millennials (ages 18 to 34) and Gen Xers (35 to 48) now make up the largest group of members (51 per cent) in Community, with boomers and retirees forming the rest of the membership.

“We know do-it-yourself investors of all ages are increasingly engaging in social interactions online and are comfortable asking questions and sharing opinions on social media sites,” said Michael MacDonald, vice-president, Strategy for RBC Direct Investing. “We’re now seeing this comfort level play out in our online Community – members are exchanging advice, tips and encouragement and learning from each other as they invest.”

What particularly sets Community apart in the online investment space is the section called “Universe” – a first when it was introduced and still unmatched in Canada. “Universe” allows members to anonymously compare their investment holdings and returns against those of other members, on an interactive chart where members and their holdings are represented by dots and clusters. Clicking on a specific dot reveals that member’s holdings (as percentages only; dollar figures are not disclosed to other members).

In the “Forums” section, members communicate directly with each other, asking questions and sharing their experiences. While RBC Direct Investing monitors the site to ensure members’ privacy is protected, the online brokerage does not participate in the conversations.

To join Community, investors must be clients of RBC Direct Investing – or clients of RBC Royal Bank Online Banking with an RBC Direct Investing Practice Account – and they need to identify a goal they hope to achieve through their online investments. To date, over 8,500 clients have joined Community and a cross-Canada contest is now underway to encourage more investors to become members. From now until October 9, 2014, a series of weekly prizes of $1,000 each will be awarded. More details about this contest and Community are available at rbcdirectinvesting.com/communitycontest/.

About RBC Direct Investing
One of Canada’s leading online brokerages, RBC Direct Investing is a wholly owned subsidiary of Royal Bank of Canada. RBC Direct Investing provides innovative tools and resources for investors who prefer to manage all or a portion of their investment portfolio. Clients have online access to their investments 24/7 and can choose from a broad range of investment products, including stocks, bonds, exchange-traded funds, GICs, and thousands of mutual funds. Online innovations such as RBC Direct Investing Community and no-risk Practice Accounts – together with comprehensive learning resources – help give all online investors the confidence they need to manage their own investments. RBC Direct Investing offers access to Series D mutual funds, a series created and priced for self-directed investors, providing them with lower pricing for conducting their own research and making their own investment decisions. For new as well as seasoned investors who wish to speak to someone directly, RBC Direct Investing has an award-winning team of investment services representatives available to respond to clients’ account and trading inquiries. RBC Direct Investing is a Member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund. For more information, please visit rbcdirectinvesting.com.

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Media Contact
Kathy Bevan, RBC Communications, 416-974-8820