Edward Jones study: 77.1 per cent of Canadians surveyed are still financially unprepared for the unexpected

News release | August 31, 2021

As COVID-19 conditions improve, Canadians recognize the need for greater protection against unexpected financial setbacks.

MISSISSAUGA, ON, August 30, 2021 – A Google Survey, conducted on behalf of  Edward Jones Canada has uncovered that the pandemic has motivated two-thirds (67.9 per cent) of Canadians to better prepare for potential unexpected emergencies or financial setbacks such as an accident or sudden illness.

Pandemic serves as a wake-up call

While Canadians may be motivated, they are not yet prepared. Edward Jones' latest survey found that an unexpected emergency would negatively impact the financial situation of more than three-quarters of Canadians (77.1 per cent). That number is highest among younger Canadians aged 25-34 and Gen X Canadians aged 45-54. In both groups, over 80 per cent of respondents said they would face negative impacts to their financial security if they experience an emergency.

“'Hope for the best and prepare for the worst' is an old adage, but people prefer not to think about, or plan for, an unexpected life event. It's human nature to avoid thinking about our worst fears," said David Gunn, President of Edward Jones Canada. “Unfortunately, unplanned life changing events can happen to anyone at any time, and Canadians can’t be prepared if they aren't considering all protective options. If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the importance of preparing for the unexpected. Those preparations are often overlooked in financial strategies, despite the fact that they help protect your assets and, more importantly, your family from whatever may come your way.” 

Most Canadians agree. Nearly 70 per cent of respondents say insurance products are essential to their overall financial strategy. However, there are still gaps to close. Among 45-54 year-old Canadians, more than one in four (27.8 per cent) don't see insurance as an essential part of their financial strategy. That number is even higher among respondents aged 25-34, 37.6 per cent of whom don't see the importance of insurance in their financial strategies.  

What motivates Canadians

When it comes to thinking about insurance, Canadians are somewhat split. The majority of respondents (53.8 per cent) noted that they would need some sort of prompt - like a news article, a reminder from their financial advisor (if they have one), or a health scare of a friend or loved one, to consider reviewing their insurance coverage. Conversely, 46.2 per cent of Canadians reported that they proactively review their insurance coverage following a significant life change, such as the birth of a child or purchase of a home, rather than the need to be prompted by external stimuli.

“A financial strategy including your insurance needs should be constantly evolving,” added Gunn. “It should keep pace with one’s changing values and purpose, priorities and goals, and so much more. Proactively evaluating your financial strategy with your financial advisor on an ongoing basis helps ensure you remain on track, protected, and maintain peace of mind.”

Where to turn?

The study also shows that when it comes to proactively evaluating their financial strategy to include insurance considerations, 48 per cent of Canadians are unsure of who or where to turn to for advice or more information on suitable insurance products. Truth is, Canadians don’t need to look far, a knowledgeable insurance licensed financial advisor can discuss and incorporate insurance considerations into their clients’ financial strategies. However, just 11.2 per cent of respondents reported going to their full-service financial advisor for advice on insurance products.

An online survey of 1,000 Canadians was conducted via Google Consumer Surveys between July 12th and 27th 2021.  Respondents that indicated a preference not to answer were excluded from results.  No margin of error can be associated with a non-probability sample, but for comparative purposes a probability sample of 1,000 respondents would have a margin of error of +/- 4% with 99% confidence.

About Edward Jones

Edward Jones is a full-service investment dealer with more than 850 financial advisors in Canadian communities from coast-to-coast. A member of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada and the Canadian Investor Protection Fund, the firm is also a participating organization in the Toronto Stock Exchange. Edward Jones is a proud supporter of partners in the health and wellness space such as The Terry Fox Foundation, whose mission supports initiatives positively impacting cancer research. For more information, visit edwardjones.ca.

Insurance and annuities are offered by Edward Jones Insurance Agency (except in Québec). In Québec, insurance and annuities are offered by Edward Jones Insurance Agency (Québec) Inc.

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

David Kitai, Edward Jones
[email protected], (905) 306-8764

Nathaniel Wallace, Proof Strategies for Edward Jones
[email protected], (416) 566-5055