Financial Consumers’ Rights and Responsibilities – 2016

POR Number 024-16

Executive Summary

Financial Consumers’ Rights and Responsibilities Survey - 2016


February 2017

Prepared for: Financial Consumer Agency of Canada


Contract Number: 5R000-160515/001/CY

Contract Date : 2016-07-20

Prepared by: Ipsos Public Affairs Canada

Executive Summary

A. Background

In support of its 2016–2017 Business Plan, which includes the priority to promote public awareness of consumers’ financial rights and responsibilities, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) sought to obtain data from consumers to evaluate their knowledge of their rights and responsibilities with respect to making informed financial decisions.

A measurement of the current financial literacy of Canadians on a range of specific measures will allow FCAC to assess the effectiveness of its consumer education and financial literacy initiatives and ensure it provides consumers with appropriate information to educate them about their rights and responsibilities, and enable them to make informed decisions and manage their financial affairs confidently.

The contract value for the research was $76,112.42, including HST.

B. Research objectives

The research objectives included the following:

This research provides insight into the Canadian general public’s awareness and knowledge of their rights and responsibilities with respect to making informed financial decisions.

C. Methodology

Ipsos conducted an 11-minute telephone survey among a nationwide sample of n=2,000 Canadian adults between July 28 and August 11, 2016. The sample was a probability sample generated by random digit dialing (RDD). Canadians were selected from households at random, first, by asking for the youngest person in the household (aged 18+), and if that person was not available or unwilling to participate, by identifying and interviewing the member of the household who had their birthday last (the “birthday method”).

Eight hundred (n=800) surveys were completed of a cellphone sample to boost representation of younger Canadians and Canadians who may no longer have landlines accessible through RDD. The cellphone sample included Canadians with a landline and a cellphone, but who identify their cellphone as their primary telephone for personal calls. Wireless samples were selected on a provincial level (as it is not practical to accurately select by market given the mobile nature of the technology) from a database containing all possible numbers in 1000-blocks of area codes and exchanges dedicated to wireless numbers.

D. Reading this report

This report provides a summary of the findings of the 2016 study and includes comparisons, where possibleFootnote 1 ,  with the studies conducted in 2011 and 2006. Differences between subgroups and year-over-year changes are noted when they are deemed to be statistically significant through T-testing. In addition, the report identifies changes of five percentage points or less that were not deemed significant through T-testing as a possible trend. Ipsos Public Affairs conducted the 2011 and 2016 waves of the research. The 2006 study was conducted by another supplier.

E. Key findings

Knowledge of banking rights and responsibilities

Views on dealing with financial institutions

Knowledge of responsibility for joint accounts

Knowledge about credit reports

Knowledge about credit card rights and responsibilities

Knowledge about prepaid card rights and responsibilities

Close to two thirds of Canadians (65%) correctly stated that it is true that “All fees associated with a prepaid card must be listed on the packaging of the prepaid card.” One in 10 (9%) incorrectly believed this to be false.

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