A recent survey on behalf of the Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) found more than 2/3rds of Canadians believe the economy – and their own financial situation – has either stagnated or worsened over the past 5 years (during a recovery!) Two-fifths of Canadians say they worry about money at least once a day.
A survey conducted by Leger on behalf of the FPSC has found that 42% of Canadians rank money as their greatest stress; driving them to lose sleep, regret past financial decisions, lie to family and friends and argue with partners.
A recent study by the Vanguard Centre for Investor Research found that 47% of Canadian pre-retirees believed there was a national retirement crisis versus 36% of post-retirees. See: Are your clients retirement ready?
Nearly everyone today, is feeling as though they need to make more income. In a time of stagnant wage growth and ultra-low interest rates, many are being attracted to financial products, promoters and so called ‘financial advisers’ who are promising higher yields. Unfortunately they are doing this at a time when risk of capital loss has rarely ever been higher in human history. The next bear market will reveal the truth about taking on excessive price risk in order to try and ‘make more’. It is only a question of when, and not if, capital losses will hit. This will set people further behind in their savings and income needs, causing them to have to work longer and/or downsize their spending plans.
Buying into the pitch of the financial sales industry, has always been a bad strategy. This cycle, it is likely to be particularly devastating.
“And this, boys and girls, is one of the direct consequences of Zero Interest Rate Policy—people are incentivized to take stupid risks just to get a little yield.”–Jared Dillian, The 10th Man
Present conditions will not be permanent, but dealing with the realities at hand is crucial. The correct way to increase cash flow today, is to reduce expenses and find some work or business income from active pursuits–perhaps rental income–that will add income, increase savings, and help to reduce and/or delay withdrawals needed. By doing this, we greatly increase the probability of financial stability and peace, now, and in the future.