Where have all our nest eggs gone?
There was a time, not very long ago, when Canadians were savers. In 1982, we routinely set aside 20 percent of our yearly income for large household purchases, education, starting businesses, retirement or just plain rainy days. Having a savings ‘nest egg’ was accepted wisdom and the norm. Then something changed… In just over 20 years, we turned from savers into spenders, saving less than 1 percent of our income by 2005. Today, we still save just over 4 percent of our yearly income. We also borrow and carry more household debt than ever before – an average 167 percent of our yearly income. How did we, the proverbial ‘ants’ of Aesop’s fable, become a nation of ‘grasshoppers’?