Almost a quarter of Canadians lack emergency funds - study

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The eighth edition of the annual Research Survey of Employed Canadians by the Canadian Payroll Association (CPA) revealed that approximately 24 per cent of the country’s workforce do not have access to at least $2,000 in case of an emergency in the subsequent months.
The survey, which polled 5,600 respondents between June 27 and August 5, also found that nearly half (48 per cent) of Canadian employees will not be able to pay for their bills and other costs of living if their salaries get delayed by even just one week, the Financial Post reported.
These troubling numbers are just the tip of the fiscal security iceberg: An overwhelming majority (75 per cent) of those surveyed have so far managed to save only a quarter of their retirement goals, with 47 per cent of those older than 50 years old saying that they are at less than a quarter of the way towards their target savings.
CPA noted that much of this financial anxiety stems from the surge in household debt over the past few years, even as a recent edition of the Bloomberg Nanos Index indicated that an increasing number of Canadians (19.9 per cent) have become more optimistic about their monetary situation.
Debt levels have grown for 31 per cent of the employees polled, and around 39 per cent indicated that they are “overwhelmed” by their dues. Fully 93 per cent are currently paying off one form of debt or another, most notably lines of credit (16 per cent), car loans (17 per cent), credit cards 18 per cent), and mortgages (26 per cent).
Most troubling of all, 47 per cent of those surveyed are able to save less than 5 per cent of their income, with 40 per cent saying that they end up spending all or more than their net earnings.
Financial adviser Adrian Mastracci said that Canadians need to start making their future their top priority.
“Don’t dwell on what you can’t control. Start simply by salting away $50 to $100 every two to four weeks into a savings account. You want to latch onto the saving habit slowly but surely,” Mastracci suggested.

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