One in five Canadians expect they'll be working forever: report
Today's retirement challenge? Too much life, not enough savings.
So much so, that nearly one in five Canadian workers (17%) are fairly sure they'll never be able to afford to retire fully, according to study released by global bank HSBC.
Among the 15 countries surveyed, Canada had one of the largest proportions of workers who feel this way, followed closely by the United Kingdom (19%) and United States (18%).
Of those who are divorced or separated, the number jumps to 24% -- another indicator that so-called grey divorces, where a growing number of people are ending their marriages in their later years -- continue to crimp retirement plans.
Late-in-life divorce means that there's much less time to rebuild retirement assets and the numbers are startling.
The divorce rate among middle-aged and older adults has doubled during the past two decades, and the rate was 2.5 times higher for remarriages than for first marriages, according to figures from the National Center for Family & Marriage.
Whereas if you were younger, in your 30s or 40s and you’re involved in a divorce and division of assets, there is still some time left to rebuild those assets,” she said.
On a more positive note, more than half (54%) of those that have already retired feel that things have actually worked out reasonably well. But that seems to be less true in this country.
Two fifths of retired Canadians (40%) admit they hadn't prepared adequately or at all for a comfortable retirement. Interestingly, a very small portion of those expect to have to go back to work to cover their financial shortfall -- which is considerably less than the 14% globally who expect to keep working.
But that may because many haven't really quit in the first place. For example, nearly half (47%) of respondents say they view work as a way to keep active physically and mentally, 41% say they like working, and 35% say staying on the job in some fashion will ease the transition into retirement.
But it's not going to be easy, warns HSBC Bank Canada Executive VP Betty Miao: "People want to slow down in later life and, while some welcome the chance to continue working, many may not. Where some people regard a comfortable retirement as a natural entitlement, for a growing number this is not the case."
Where do you fit in? Do you expect to work forever? Has a late life breakup increased the likelihood of that happening?
By Gordon Powers, MSN Money
Posted by: Chris | Sep 27, 2021 7:53:47 AM
My wife and I am fortunate to be working for the federal government that will provide us with a defined benefit pension plan when we turn 56 and 55. We will receive 60% of our top years average salary at that time for the rest of our lives. I have also put as much money as I can into RRSP's but this will not be a very large source of my retirement income since I have only been able to sock away about $3k per year into it and interest rates have been abysmal lately. We have our home fully paid for and a cottage that is fully paid for as well. Right now my wife and I are in our mid 40's and socking away as much as we can into savings and into TFSA's and we max out every year. As it looks now retirement will be very good for my wife and I. But you never know......there have been talks of changing our DB plans to DC plans.....hopefully just for new hires in the government so we won't be affected, but again there are no guarantees in life.
Posted by: George Brown | Sep 27, 2021 1:28:23 PM
Well La de da da, a-hole, are you bragging or just loathing over everyone that has to actually work for a living in the private sector, and then you have the nerve to kick the new goverment hires by hoping it's just them that have they're DB plans changed. It's no wonder theres so much resentment towards goverment workers, it's idiots like you with your holier than thou attitude just because of your jerkoff goverment job that you probably got through a relative or friend...... probably relative ,because jerks like you have very few friends I'm sure.
Posted by: williamm Mann | Sep 27, 2021 5:21:18 PM
to the Federal civil servent, I,m sure you had a cushie job , I once worked for the civil service and found it a group of slackers that is why I left it. seems to me you are like a MP who forgets there are people who they serve, I have found civil servents, buck passers , now wonder what you did ? I still work as a farmer because I love it and devote my life too my land and animals and am in late 70.s and enjoying every day
Posted by: Noel Evans | Sep 27, 2021 5:56:43 PM
Those comments by Chris are sickening , typical of government workers , he sounds like he knows nothing about what is going on in the real world protected by huge salaries and pensions in his paid for house and cottage in the country . Next time he should think who is paying him and his wife before throwing it in the face of those who pay him with often grossly over inflated wages and pensions .
Posted by: Mark | Sep 27, 2021 6:07:26 PM
With a late in life divorce, what does it matter if you have to work until your body gives up anyway. Either way you work to the end, might as well enjoy life.
Posted by: Greg | Sep 27, 2021 6:22:40 PM
Hi Chris, I hope there is a God. You will pay later
Posted by: Jaymo | Sep 27, 2021 6:39:19 PM
Funny thing, 20 or so years ago all of my colleagues were pining for the day when they could retire. As the day approached a strange paradigm shift occurred in their mindset. None of them wanted to retire at all. They all wanted to keep on working, to be productive, to remain socially active in the workforce. Indeed, today, with most of them past 65, none of them retired at all. Dollars to cronuts, most so called retirees of the boomer generation will "keep on truckin" in the workforce until they fall apart.
Posted by: eric | Sep 27, 2021 7:47:27 PM
Read the question again. It didn't ask for a snapshot of your financial portfolio. Anyone having a defined benefit plan these days who assumes it is not under threat of being converted to a defined contribution plan at some point in the future is being naive. Defined benefit plans are not sustainable. They are the focal point of labour disputes everywhere these days....surely governments that struggle financially would also love to eliminate them once and for all.
Posted by: Diana | Sep 27, 2021 11:37:38 PM
I am a new public servant and I really dislike the older generation of public servants because they have permanent positions and don't have to actually do their jobs to keep all their benefits and retire nicely in a few years. The reality of the new generation (mid-twenties to mid-thirties) of public servants is very different and many of us are considering going back or to the public sector because we have short work contracts, 90 days at a time to max 1 year, zero guarantees,no way of getting a a permanent position, lots of overtime hours without being paid, big workload, etc. And guess what, if you have a breach between your contracts, you go back to zero on most benefits. I don't think that I'll be working forever because I was smart enough to start saving for retirement since I was 19, but in order to make sure that I'll actually have a comfortable retirement, I'm planning on going back to working for a major international company where performance actually matters and where you can get bonuses and if you're a great asset to your employer they'll take care of you. So, for all of you who think that public servants are lazy bums and are making our work conditions horrible, in the not so far away future, no one will want to be a public servant anymore and good luck to all of us when trying to get service.
Posted by: Greg | Sep 28, 2021 12:12:58 AM
this country is heading for the guard rails,simply get out . I prepared myself I divorced my screwed up ex wife who embraced big government and I let her take the kids ,I am leaving to live in a less developed country and I simply cant wait to leave oh BTW I was born in Canada
Posted by: Frank | Sep 28, 2021 6:33:46 PM
Not me. I am 54 and retiring. I made a lot of sacrifices to save for retirement, and now I am reaping the benefits.
Posted by: Lola | Sep 30, 2021 8:08:54 PM
The Grasshopper and the Ant
For several decades in this country, the Ant (government worker) toiled away in his tiny cubicle serving the public. He never received a “bonus”, was lucky to receive a 3% pay raise if he got one at all and was required to contribute to a defined benefit pension plan. He never even saw that money; it came right off his pay cheque and disappeared into the black hole of “pension administration”. He had no input into how that money was invested and discovered after many years of contributing that there was this large “unfunded liability”, due primarily to the unwise investment strategies of the “pension administrator”. In order to make up this shortfall, his contribution rates were increased several times over the succeeding years.
The Grasshopper (private sector worker) meanwhile, liked to lord it over the little Ant, boasting about the fact that his salary was 30% higher, that he got an annual bonus every year, and double digit raises, and other perks like a company car and expense account. Did the Grasshopper ever save any of this bounty he received from the private sector? Noooooo… he spent everything he earned and more (the future was faaaar away and he wanted to “live for today”).
Many years have passed and now both the Ant and Grasshopper are getting old and seeing the Winter of their lives approaching. The Ant is well prepared; even though he may not have liked it at the time, he realizes now that by sacrificing high wages, bonuses and company perks for the security and stability of a job that MADE him contribute to a pension plan, he has secured a comfortable retirement.
The Grasshopper on the other hand, has realized far too late that his years of squander have left him unable to even consider retirement. However , he can’t admit that singing and dancing his way through the Summer of his life with no thought to the future wasn’t such a good idea. Instead he’d rather begrudge and try to take away that which the little Ant sacrificed throughout his career, to obtain.
For shame Grasshopper. You’ll get no sympathy from me.
Posted by: George Brown | Oct 1, 2021 7:09:42 AM
Re: Lola, You must be the a-hole Chris's wife.... What side of the telescope are you looking through, your little nursery tale is a typical fallback excuse story that I would expect from a no-talent goverment worker. It shows what kind of dellusional world you live in and your better than everybody else attitude..... people like you are the lowest form..
Posted by: Crucked Banks! | Oct 1, 2021 1:16:02 PM
Re : Lola
In which country you leave ? Is RRSP a wise decision to contribute ? A wise investment last 20 to 30 years ?
Working for private sector means, you have no permanent and not at all secure job. What you saved this year you lost next after loosing your job. Perhaps you don't belong to my group but to a mafia from ? I thing we should apply for jobs where from the mafia is coming my darling. Canada is no longer populated with Europeans (as in past) and your job is not secure any longer in government or private sector. God luck in your new job in Asia and in retirement.
Posted by: carl | Oct 1, 2021 3:06:44 PM
I like how the poor little civil servants plead their cases about low wages and no bonuses but fail to ever mention the other perks that cost the private workers money to have. How about paid sick leave, medical and dental benefits, paid vacations that are substantially greater than the regulated minimums. And in many cases paid educational upgrades, not only the fees but time off to take the courses and at the end more pay because they have increased their education and pay level( and everything that goes wit it)h. How about that accumulating of sick days to get paid or tacked on the end just before retirement. There was one civil servant I knew that got nine weeks vacation yearly.
So, take your boo hoo-ing else where because while private entity workers usually do not have the perks and if you calculate the after tax expenses for health care benefits and retirement you're still out ahead. And try being non productive in the private sector and see if there is an employee union to protect your job. You people don't realize how lucky you have been up until now.