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Nearly half of working-age Canadians not saving for retirement: report

A report by HSBC says 48 per cent of pre-retirees in the country say they have not started or are not currently saving for their life after work.

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A report by HSBC suggests that nearly half of working-age Canadians are not saving for retirement.

The big international bank says 48 per cent of pre-retirees in the country say they have not started or are not currently saving for their life after work.

The poll was part of a global retirement report done by HSBC.

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The survey also found that one in five working-age Canadians say that money from downsizing or selling their home or a secondary property will help pay for retirement.

That was nearly twice the global average of 12 per cent and more than the five per cent of current Canadian retirees.

The poll also found that Canadian retirees were among the "happiest," with 72 per cent reporting they feel happy in retirement – second only to retirees in Mexico at 80 per cent.

"While Canadian retirees rank as some of the happiest in the world, almost half of working-age people in Canada are not currently saving for retirement," said Betty Miao, executive vice-president and head of retail banking and wealth management at HSBC Bank Canada.

"While a change of lifestyle or move to retirement living may be a great thing come retirement, it's worth noting the wisdom shared by many of today's retirees: start saving earlier, take good care of yourself and your health, and don't hesitate to get advice from trusted professionals."

The survey also found that 53 per cent of Canadian retirees say a government pension is helping pay for retirement, while 35 per cent of those still working say that's likely to be the case for them.

The federal government and all the provinces, except Quebec, recently reached an agreement in principle to help strengthen the Canada Pension Plan.

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The deal, which is still being finalized, would see CPP premium increases for workers and employers, but also see Canadians receive more in retirement.

The HSBC report included the views of 18,207 working age people and retirees across 17 countries and territories around the world, including 1,037 in Canada.

The research was conducted online by IpsosMORI in September and October 2015, with additional face-to-face interviews in Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.

The polling industry's professional body, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error because they do not randomly sample the population.

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