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Sun Life Financial study finds nearly half of Canadians will be working past age 65


January 30, 2009
By CNW Group Ltd.

Jan. 30, 2009 – According to a new report released by Sun Life
Financial, many Canadians now expect to work longer for positive
reasons, such as remaining mentally active and enjoyment of career, but
they are also concerned about their financial readiness for retirement.

According to the country's first ever "Unretirement(TM) Index" released
today by Sun Life Financial, many Canadians now expect to work longer
for positive reasons, such as remaining mentally active and enjoyment
of career, but they are also concerned about their financial readiness
for retirement. These findings signal a departure from how Canadians
have been retiring in the last few years and will have important
implications for families, employers and society.

"Despite many Canadians expecting to work after age 65, those surveyed
are approaching this reality with resolve," said Dean Connor,
President, Sun Life Financial Canada. "Interestingly, in pinpointing
their primary reason for working past age 65, as many people singled
out lifestyle reasons as those who indicated financial reasons."

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– Nearly half of working Canadians believe they will be working past
the traditional retirement age of 65. This is in sharp contrast to the
average Canadian retirement age of 61 in recent years.
– Nearly all of those who expect to work beyond age 65 cite one or more
lifestyle reasons, including remaining mentally active, enjoyment of
their jobs and the interaction with their co-workers.
– In the survey, 75 per cent of Canadians rated their personal health
and overall level of happiness highly. The survey found much less
confidence around general economic conditions and Canadians' personal
finances.

"Despite the optimism, many Canadians are not as clear about what it
will take for them to reach a comfortable level of retirement income,"
said Connor. "Only 28 per cent of people are very confident they will
have enough money to enjoy their desired lifestyle in retirement. Not
surprisingly, Canadians who use a financial advisor to help them plan
for retirement feel much more confident when it comes to their future."

Working Canadians who used a financial advisor to help provide retirement advice reported that:

– they are making better financial decisions (87 per cent),
– they will have a better retirement (86 per cent),
– they are more confident about their finances (83 per cent),
– their spouse/partner has more confidence they're doing all they can (79 per cent).

What are Canadians doing to prepare their finances for retirement?

– Just 22 per cent expressed full satisfaction with their level of personal savings, or with how their income is growing.

Over the past 12 months, less than half of Canadians have calculated
whether their retirement income will last long enough (44 per cent) or
calculated how much income they'll need to retire (41 per cent).
– Furthermore, 62 per cent of Canadians polled lack a written financial
retirement plan and only 47 per cent have spoken to a financial advisor
to create or update a written retirement plan within the last 12
months.


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