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Canadian Investors Taking a More Conservative Approach to their Investments

Canadian Investors Taking a More Conservative Approach to their Investments

One-in-four Canadians say economic uncertainty and market volatility has led them to take a more conservative approach to their savings and investments, according to a recent Scotiabank study gauging Canadians' attitudes toward investing and retirement in the current economic environment. This is particularly true among investors who are heading into retirement (aged 50+), more than one-third of whom have pushed back their retirement age.

"Considering that equity markets worldwide are down significantly, it comes as no surprise that investors are paying close attention to their risk tolerance and how their portfolios are positioned to meet their long term goals," said Gareth Watson, Director and Senior Equity Advisor, ScotiaMcLeod. "In down markets, it's natural for investors to become more conservative when surrounded by substantial volatility and uncertainty."

According to the study, 39 per cent of Canadians say they are paying more attention to their investments as a result of the economy. Fifty-four per cent of those surveyed indicated they are more likely now to seek a second opinion on their investments, with 30 per cent having already done so at a financial institution they do not normally deal with. In fact, 17 per cent say they took the recommendations of the advisor who provided the second opinion.

"Financial planning is a high priority for many Canadians," says Mr. Watson. "Just like any important decision, it's wise to seek advice from more than one source to ensure that decisions are well informed and provide comfort."

Forty per cent of Canadians say financial advisors at banks and credit unions will be in highest demand this year to help them navigate their investment options.

The Scotiabank Investment Study was conducted for Scotiabank by Harris/Decima, among members of Harris/Decima's online panel. (*) To qualify for the survey, respondents were required to be household investment decision makers and have household savings/investments. A total of 1,006 online surveys were conducted from among a random sample of Harris/Decima panel members, of which 701 qualified as household investment decision makers with household savings/investments. The study was conducted November 11th, 2008 to November 17th, 2008. Subsequent to completion of the study, the data was weighted for region, age, and gender.

Scotiabank is one of North America's premier financial institutions and Canada's most international bank. With more than 69,000 employees, Scotiabank Group and its affiliates serve approximately 12.5 million customers in some 50 countries around the world. Scotiabank offers a diverse range of products and services including personal, commercial, corporate and investment banking. With $508 billion in assets (as at October 31, 2008), Scotiabank trades on the Toronto (BNS) and New York Exchanges (BNS). For more information please visit

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