July 03, 2024

Canadians struggle to plan for retirement as cost of living continues to climb

It pays to be digital – digitally engaged employees have more money saved, feel more confident and experience better retirement outcomes

Sun Life Logo (CNW Group/Sun Life Financial Canada)

TORONTO, July 3, 2024 /CNW/ - With mounting cost of living pressures, Canadians are struggling when it comes to planning and saving for retirement. A recent study done by the Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) for Sun Life shows that one third of Canadians struggle to plan for retirement and that 75% of people say their cost of living is negatively impacting their retirement savings. 

Over half of respondents are worried they do not have enough money to retire. While financial situations vary considerably, some cited a lack of confidence in where to find quality information. Planning for retirement can have a huge impact on feeling prepared when it comes time to exit the workforce.

"There are many factors to think about for Canadians when it comes to saving for retirement," says Eric Monteiro, Senior Vice-President, Group Retirement Services, Sun Life. "Planning can significantly affect someone's ability to retire. Considering what you want your retirement to look like, and building a roadmap to get there is essential."

When saving for retirement - it pays to be digital

When it comes to saving, employees who are digitally engaged have more money saved, feel more confident about their plan, and experience better retirement outcomes. Logging-in and being engaged pays:

  • Members who are digitally engaged see an average balance 230% higher than those who are not engaged ($123,800 versus $51,800).
  • Digital members contribute 61% more to their savings accounts than those who aren't online ($8,700 versus $3,400).
  • Digital members are two times as likely to maximize an employer match. While 30% of non-digital members maximized that match in 2023, this compares to 61% of digital members.

Those who are digitally engaged are also more likely to make lump sum contributions and are more likely to withdraw less money from their savings. These findings are part of Sun Life's Designed for Savings: Digital Engagement report that uses data from 1.45 million Sun Life Group Retirement plan members to identify workplace savings trends in Canada. The data shows a clear correlation between digital engagement and stronger retirement readiness.

"It's important that people not only prepare for retirement but feel confident in the decisions they've made. It's clear that those who regularly log-in online see the long-term benefits of embracing the convenience of digital tools. These numbers paint a vivid picture about how technology can empower people to take control of their financial future," said Monteiro.

Sun Life recently launched their new Retirement Planner powered by Sun Life One Plan. The tool is available to plan members and helps create a financial assessment in less than five minutes. It includes personalized insights and projections to help people plan for the retirement of their dreams. Plan members also have the option to seek advice from one of our licensed consultants* to go deeper into their planning experience creating a financial roadmap to unlock a lifetime of possibilities.

Learn more about the new Retirement Planner powered by Sun Life One Plan now.

*Registered as financial security advisors in Quebec.

About Sun Life
Sun Life is a leading international financial services organization providing asset management, wealth, insurance and health solutions to individual and institutional Clients. Sun Life has operations in a number of markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, Australia, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia and Bermuda. As of March 31, 2024, Sun Life had total assets under management of $1.47 trillion. For more information, please visit

Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under the ticker symbol SLF.

Note to editors: All figures in Canadian dollars

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SOURCE Sun Life Financial Canada