Toronto – Rising food and gas prices are having a huge impact on Canadian consumers and their budgets a survey has found.
The survey is the Royal Bank of Canada’s latest Canadian Consumer Outlook Index, which the bank released today.
RBC found that of the almost 4,000 Canadians surveyed, 45 per cent say their budgets are feeling the pinch.
These rising costs were registering highest among those living in Ontario (51 per cent), Atlantic Canada (49 per cent) and Quebec (48 per cent).
The survey also found that consumers across the country are concerned with managing their debts.
The results show that 39 per cent plan to pay off their debt as much as possible, 30 per cent will focus on spending less, 23 per cent are looking to save or invest more and 25 per cent say they intend to do all of these.
While 42 per cent of Canadians feel the economy will improve over the next year, this sentiment is even stronger in several regions, including Alberta (50 per cent), B.C. (46 per cent), Saskatchewan/Manitoba (45 per cent) and Ontario (44 per cent).
As for the current state of the economy, 61 per cent of Canadians describe it as “good,” compared to 75 per cent of Prairie residents in Saskatchewan/Manitoba, 69 per cent of Albertans and 63 per cent of residents of B.C.
Personal financial outlook
The number of Canadians who generally feel that their personal financial situation will improve over the next year increased by one percentage point to 39 per cent since January 2010.
This view is held most strongly in Alberta (45 per cent), Quebec (43 per cent) and Saskatchewan/Manitoba (40 per cent).
Nationally, job anxiety has increased by two percentage points to 22 per cent. At 28 per cent, residents of Ontario are expressing the most concern about the outlook for job loss or layoffs in the upcoming year, followed by people living in Quebec and Atlantic Canada (21 per cent each). Prairie residents in Saskatchewan/Manitoba are the least anxious about jobs (16 per cent).