Financial news and advice — November 2015

Extroverts have more difficulty saving money, says a new study. Plus, a new poll shows that most US workers would feel successful making less than US$70,000 a year.


Extroverts save less money, study shows

Why do celebs such as Pamela Anderson, Nicolas Cage, and 50 Cent seem to blow through their millions in no time? Their extroverted personalities may be to blame, suggests research by Jacob Hirsch, assistant professor at Rotman School and University of Toronto Mississauga’s Institute for Management and Innovation. Hirsh looked at levels of extroversion and savings rates in the US over time, household savings in the most extroverted US states, and national savings rates in extroverted countries. “Across all three different analyses, the same pattern emerged,” he says. “The more extroverted the population, the lower the savings rates tended to be, even when controlling for population differences in age, life expectancy, and wealth.”


Retirement plans gone awry

Warren Buffett 

While we'd all like the option to control when — or whether (as is the case with 85-year-old Warren Buffett) — we retire, the reality is that two in five Canadians don’t have that luxury. In an Ipsos survey for RBC, 43% of retirees say they did not get to choose when they retired. Reasons cited include health (14%), employer’s request (13%), reaching mandatory retirement age (5%) or becoming a loved one’s caregiver (5%).


Salaries increasing 4%

Accounting and finance professionals should expect about a 4% salary increase in 2016, according to Robert Half Canada. The rise in base salary was second among five fields tracked by the staffing service, with the technology sector projected to see the highest average pay gains, at 5%. The administrative professions registered projected starting salary increases of 3.3%, followed by the legal and creative industries, with average base pay expected to rise 2.7% and 2.1%, respectively, next year.


Gatineau has country's lowest gender pay gap

Women in Gatineau, Que., come closest to earning what men earn, finds research by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. Women in Gatineau earn 87¢ on the male dollar, as compared to the national average of 70¢. Abbotsford-Mission, BC, has the biggest gender pay gap of any of the 25 cities measured, with women taking home just 57% of what men earn.


Seventy grand = success

More than half (52%) of current US workers say they would feel successful making less than US$70,000 a year, and more than three-quarters put the mark of success below US$100,000, according to a CareerBuilder survey. Interestingly, high school students set the bar significantly higher: 63% said they’d need to earn more than US$70,000 to feel successful, including 21% who want to earn US$100K to US$150K to feel they’ve made it.