Investor research is key to improving our knowledge and understanding of important investor needs and issues, and the Investor Office has undertaken a number of research initiatives over the past year. In addition, the Investor Office established a new online research panel capability for the OSC. With the OSC now having access to almost 40,000 active survey panelists from across the country, studies can be in the field in as few as 48 hours, with results provided within a week, allowing for much more targeted and timely investor research.
Financial Literacy: A Foundation of the Investor Experience
November 28, 2019
This research tested investor knowledge of key topics including diversification, inflation, and interest. Preliminary results from this study reveal that 34% of Canadians have high financial literacy and 24% of investors may be overconfident in their knowledge
Research Study: Improving fee disclosure through behavioural insights
August 19, 2019
Improving Fee Disclosure through Behavioural Insights identifies behaviourally informed ways to improve how investment fees are communicated to investors by their registered dealers, advisers, and their registered representatives (registrants). The report also includes the results of a randomized experiment that demonstrates how these tactics can make disclosures easier for investors to understand.
National Investor Research Study
November 28, 2018
Key findings include that Canadians aged 18-34 are the most likely to believe their standard of living will increase in retirement, despite being the least likely to have started saving for retirement of any age group; seven per cent of Canadian adults currently own cannabis investments, with 1 in 4 cannabis investors spending $10,000 or more on their investments; and most Canadian adults with parents aged 45 or older say their parents have not talked to them about how they would like their finances managed if they were no longer able to do so.
Read the research summaries:
- Retirement Preparedness: A Cross-Country Checkup
- Conversations about Finances as we Age
- Clearing the Air about Cannabis Investing
Research Study: Encouraging Retirement Planning through Behavioural Insights
July 27, 2018
Encouraging Retirement Planning through Behavioural Insights identifies ways in which government, regulators, employers, and financial institutions can apply behavioural insights to promote retirement planning. The report includes the results of a randomized experiment that found, among other things, that prompting individuals to think about the friends and family they will be able to spend more time with in retirement can be highly effective in motivating individuals to start the retirement planning process. The OSC issued a Staff Notice endorsing the key findings of the report.
Research Study: Getting Started: Human-Centred Solutions to Engage Ontario Millennials in Investing
July 12, 2018
This behavioural insights research study outlines barriers millennials face when attempting to learn more about or start investing, as well as tactics public and private organizations can employ to address these barriers. The study, prepared by Upside Consulting Group in collaboration with OSC staff, draws from nearly 30 hours of in-depth interviews with Ontarians in the millennial cohort, as well as a review of behavioural sciences literature and existing investing channels available to millennials. The OSC issued a Staff Notice endorsing the report’s key findings.
Research Study: Taking Caution: Financial Consumers and the Cryptoasset Sector
June 28, 2018
According to Taking Caution: Financial Consumers and the Cryptoasset Sector, half of past and present cryptoasset owners either don’t know who regulates offerings of digital coins or tokens (often called “initial coin offerings” or “ICOs”) or believe these offerings are unregulated. In addition, one-third said they wouldn’t know where to go if they had a complaint about a cryptoasset service provider. As discussed in the report, the OSC regulates ICOs that are securities offerings, and securities regulatory authorities recently published new regulatory guidance for businesses considering launching ICOs.
Research Snapshot: Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrencies
December 11, 2017
Interest in cryptocurrencies has increased significantly over the past several months. As a first step towards learning more about who is purchasing cryptocurrencies and why, the Investor Office commissioned a small online survey of Ontarians age 18 and over. Among the findings, 7% of Ontarians reported owning a cryptocurrency, including 29% of men aged 18 to 34.
Research Study: Missing Out
November 27, 2017
According to Missing Out: Millennials and the Markets, a new research study by the OSC Investor Office, 4 in 5 Ontario millennials (age 18–36) are saving, but only 1 in 2 are investing. Top reasons non-investor millennials gave for avoiding investing included having other financial priorities, not having enough income or savings, not knowing enough about investing, and concerns about losing money in the markets. The research study draws from a survey of Ontarians age 18–36 on investment practices, attitudes and behaviours.
Research Study: Investing As We Age
September 26, 2017
According to a new Investor Office survey on Investing As We Age, the top financial concerns for 25% of Ontarians age 45 and over are retirement-related, and almost half (45%) of pre-retired Ontario homeowners 45+ are relying on the value of their home increasing to fund their retirement. The survey also found gender differences in reported knowledge, behaviour, and stress relating to financial planning among Ontarians 45+, with half as many women (27%) as men (51%) reporting having “good” or “excellent” knowledge of investing. These findings and more are covered in the full research study.
Report: Behavioural Insights: Key Concepts, Applications and Regulatory Considerations
March 29, 2017
Behavioural insights use psychology, economic and other research to examine how consumers are often neither deliberate, nor rational in their decisions in the way that traditional models, strategies and policies assume. This report by the OSC Investor Office looks at how leading practitioners and regulators are using behavioural insights to address issues in capital markets and improve outcomes for investors and market participants.
Report: Retirement Readiness: Canadians 50+
September 9, 2016
Seniors are an extremely important and growing segment of investors whose needs and issues demand attention. Findings from a new study, Retirement Readiness: Canadian 50+, commissioned by the Investor Office of the OSC reveal that over half of Canadians do not have a plan for retirement savings, reinforcing the key findings of a study done a year ago.
Report: Financial Life Stages of Older Canadians
June 1, 2015
If older Canadians could take what they know now about the financial realities of retirement and apply that knowledge earlier in life, what would they do? A new study commissioned by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) provides some of those insights and more. Financial Life Stages of Older Canadians, a national study conducted for the OSC’s Investor Office identifies the top financial concerns of older Canadians, particularly as they relate to retirement planning and living. The study, released as part of the OSC’s Seniors' Month activities, identifies the main financial risks of Canadians aged 50 and up at each life stage and how they are being managed.
Report: Investor Risk, Behaviour & Beliefs
February 4, 2014
The Canadian Money State of Mind Risk Survey 2014: Investor Risk, Behaviour & Beliefs, a national study conducted for the Investor Education Fund (now part of the Ontario Securities Commission’s Investor Office) by The Brondesbury Group, provides a compelling look at how Canadians handle – or don’t handle – risk, emotion, financial loss and decision-making when it comes to their investments.
Report: Home Equity as a Source of Retirement Income
February 25, 2013
According to a new survey conducted for the Investor Education Fund (now part of the Ontario Securities Commission’s Investor Office) by The Brondesbury Group, Canadians are not saving enough for retirement, and half believe they will run out of their retirement savings in the first 10 years of retirement. Despite the lack of retirement savings, the survey revealed that four out of 10 respondents were not willing to consider capitalizing on home equity as an option for retirement income.