Despite the fact that the majority of Canadian residents are feeling confident about their savings and income, the percentage of those who are concerned remains higher than in previous years.
The numbers shift depending on where in the country people are surveyed, but consistently the average citizen is slightly less comfortable with their own financial security than they have been in the past.
Insecurity in the oil industry finances
Why this less-than-sunny outlook exists may be down to a few key factors. One is the insecurity in the oil industry. The tumbling price of oil coupled with the glut of oil in reserves has meant less new product being needed, and less profit on every barrel that is sold.
Obviously, this has left the communities that rely on this industry worried about what the future may hold, and even if recovery of the industry is possible.
Lowered growth expectations
Another issue that may be putting canadians finance plans on hold is the lowered growth expectations for the coming year. Economists believe that 2016 will see less growth than initially planned and political leaders are often sending mixed messages about the prospects for the new year.
The interest rates were lowered again in response to a number of economic factors and the unsteadiness in the Chinese market is concerning economists around the world.
Rising average household debt
Concerns are also high about the rising average household debt in the country, especially since many of these homes are not contributing what they should be to savings and retirement accounts. A final consideration is the drop in manufacturing in 2015 that has not yet recovered, and has no clear sign of being able to do so.
Since many in this business have been relying on an increase in sales to the United States, the unpredictability of the US economy, especially during an election year, is concerning.
Many corporations are concerned about both of these issues as well, and are reacting by cutting their own budgets, just in case. This has left some employees seeing their fringe benefits being stripped down and are realizing there is a lower chance of potential income growth for themselves as well.
Oil industry experts are already predicting more layoffs for 2016, something that not only affects the people who are left without a job, but the communities where they live and shop.
It is not all doom and gloom, as there are still many industries growing across the country that may help to take the place of the losses in the struggling oil patch. Health care industries for example are doing well, particularly as the average age in the country has risen.
The technology industry has also been steadily growing and may continue to offer a number of job opportunities, especially for those who are leaving college and looking for specialized careers.
Concerns relating to canadians finance issues are not necessarily negative. These moments are a good opportunity for individuals to assess their own financial situation and take steps to make their finances more secure.
This can be accomplished through sensible investing, establishing savings accounts and curbing their own spending.
By taking these steps not only are individual households made more secure, but the country overall.