Four-in-10 Canadian women know “very little” about finance and investment

Nearly four-in-10 (38%) Canadian women admit they know “very little” about finance and investment according to a national survey commissioned by the Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) in time for International Women’s Day (March 8).

 The Leger poll asked 1,000 Canadian women last month about the struggles they face when it comes to feeling financially empowered.

The survey found nearly nine-in-ten (86%) Canadian women have at least one struggle when it comes to their finances, including the following:

  • Nearly four-in-10 (38%) say they know “very little” about finance and investment
  • Nearly three-in-10 (28%) are dependent on a partner or someone else to make ends meet financially

“These numbers show that women still have a long way to go in terms of their comfort and understanding in regard to financial matters,” said Kelley Keehn, award-winning author, personal finance educator and consumer advocate for FPSC. “It’s a wakeup call and an opportunity to seek education, grow in effectiveness and lay claim to our financial independence.”

Here are some of the survey’s other standout findings:

  • Single women are significantly more likely than their married counterparts to admit they know very little about issues related to finance and investment (47% vs. 35% of married women)
  • Nearly four-in-ten (38%) women feel uncomfortable negotiating a better interest rate
  • 16% of women leave the management of household finances and investments to their partner
  • 34 percent have more debt (outside of real estate) than savings
  • 19 percent of women do not keep track of their spending

Of all the women polled, over half (56%) do not have a written financial plan (stunningly, 60% of those aged 45-54 don’t have a plan), while 42 percent do not know their credit score.

Women can empower themselves with these tips:

  • Know the lingo: Simply vow to get up five minutes early every day―just for one week―and Google as many financial terms as you can. Knowing a few financial basics and some terminology is a great start to building strong financial self-esteem for women.
  • Start a money group: Studies have shown that women can learn better when discussing topics with their cohorts. The group doesn’t have to be complex. Simply meeting once a month to discuss all things financial is a solid step to identifying and reaching your goals.
  • Work with a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® professional: The most important move is getting a pro on your side. Working with a CFP® professional is the quickest way to build your self-confidence and ensure it stays strong your entire life.

There are free resources for women to build their confidence and take charge of their financial future at www.financialplanningforcanadians.ca.

The full results of the Financial Independence survey can be found here.

About Financial Planning Standards Council
A professional standards-setting and certification body working in the public interest, FPSC’s purpose is to drive value and instill confidence in financial planning. FPSC ensures those it certifies―Certified Financial Planner® and FPSC Level 1® Certificants in Financial Planning―meet appropriate standards of competence and professionalism through rigorous requirements of education, examination, experience and ethics. With FPSC’s formal partnership with the Institut québécois de planification financière (IQPF), which is the only organization authorized to certify Financial Planners in Québec, there are more than 23,500 Financial Planners in Canada who have met, and continue to meet, FPSC’s standards. More information is available at FPSC.ca and FinancialPlanningForCanadians.ca.

About the Financial Independence Survey
Leger conducted a survey of 1,000 Canadian women completed between Feb 12 and 15, 2018 using its online panel, LegerWeb. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-3.1%, 19 times out of 20. Leger’s online panel has approximately 400,000 members nationally – with between 10,000 and 20,000 new members added each month and has a retention rate of 90 percent.

About FinancialPlanningForCanadians.ca
FinancialPlanningForCanadians.ca was created by FPSC to provide Canadian consumers with useful, actionable information about financial planning. The site—containing over 100 articles, videos and research results—encourages consumers to use financial planning to navigate various life stages.


CFP®, Certified Financial Planner® and CFP® mark logo are certification trademarks owned outside the U.S. by Financial Planning Standards Board Ltd. (FPSB). Financial Planning Standards Council is the marks licensing authority for the CFP marks in Canada, through agreement with FPSB. All other ® are registered trademarks of FPSC, unless indicated. © 2018 Financial Planning Standards Council. All rights reserved.

SOURCE Financial Planning Standards Council


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