Majority of newcomers to Canada not confident in their financial knowledge: RBC poll

Majority of newcomers to Canada not confident in their financial knowledge: 
RBC poll 
Misconceptions about credit persist among new immigrants 
TORONTO, July 3, 2013 /CNW/ - Six-in-10 newcomers (60 per cent) who arrived in 
Canada in the past year say that they lack financial knowledge, including how 
to establish and build credit during their first year living in Canada, 
according to the RBC Newcomer Financial Attitudes Poll. Among those who have 
lived in Canada between two and five years, 92 percent of newer Canadians 
found their financial literacy about borrowing options improved. 
"We have an opportunity to improve financial understanding for newcomers to 
Canada when they first arrive and we have a role to play in making sure that 
they are getting the right advice from day one," said Paul Sy, director, 
Multicultural Markets, RBC. "Building a strong credit score is important to 
helping you get established in Canada, particularly when the time comes to buy 
a car or a family home." 
During the first year in their new home country, few newcomers believed that 
using a credit card would help them establish a credit rating (nine per cent) 
or make life more convenient (12 per cent). But over time, these newcomers 
pick up financial knowledge quickly, as they integrate into their communities 
and learn to use credit responsibly. For immigrants who have lived in Canada 
for two to five years, they were now more likely to agree that credit cards 
make life more convenient (59 per cent) and that it's easy to use a credit 
card to help establish a Canadian credit rating (54 per cent). 
"Economically and socially, it is in Canada's best interest for its consumers 
to be financially literate and practice good financial habits," said Sy. 
Demystifying credit for newcomers
There are still a lot of misconceptions when it comes to credit use for 
newcomers to Canada and Sy clarifies the following: 

    --  Myth: In Canada, your credit rating is affected by your age,
        income and gender. The higher a person's income, the better
        that person's credit rating will be. Reality: Your credit
        rating is based on your record of managing your finances
        responsibly. Lenders look at how you handle your financial
        obligations, such as whether you pay your monthly bills on
        time, carry a balance, or regularly miss payments.
    --  Myth: Someone who has a lot of assets in their home country
        will have a better credit rating. Reality: Although assets are
        part of the equation, lenders in Canada will also focus on your
        Canadian borrowing history to assess your creditworthiness.
        That's why it is important to build your Canadian credit
        profile early on, especially if you have plans for big
        purchases, such as a house or car, which typically require a
        loan. Even smaller transactions, such as renting living
        accommodations or getting a cell phone, often require a credit
    --  Myth: When you get married your credit scores are merged.
        Reality: Credit scores are based on individuals. Any joint
        application for a loan will be assessed on both partner's
        credit profiles. As well, any negative or positive reporting
        will be reflected on each score and could affect your approval
        or the terms of your loan.

To learn more about how RBC helps newcomers get financially prepared for life 
in Canada, please visit:

About the RBC Newcomer Financial Attitudes Poll
The findings were conducted by Environics Research Group on behalf of RBC in 
May 2013. Environics conducted a total of 560 interviews among Chinese, South 
Asian and other immigrant residents in British Columbia and Ontario who are 
first generation and have lived in Canada for up to five years. Interviews 
were conducted online and respondents were recruited from an online consumer 
research panel. Quotas were applied to represent the different regions and 
tenure in Canada to represent the population as closely as possible. A survey 
with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100 per cent response 
rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±five percentage points 19 
times out of 20 of what the results would have been had the entire population 
of immigrants in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be 
subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to, coverage 
error and measurement error.

About RBC's Welcome to Canada Package 
For more than seven generations, RBC has been supporting newcomers by 
providing them with resources and tools that make the transition to a new 
country seamless. The RBC Welcome to Canada package helps newcomers who have 
been in Canada for less than three years with key financial decisions and 
includes advice and discounts on products and services, such as a no-annual 
fee RBC Cash Back MasterCard to help them start building credit. Consumers 
around the world can access information on moving to Canada, including 
financial advice checklists and more, at

Ka Yan Ng, RBC Communications, 416 974-1794,


To view this news release in HTML formatting, please use the following URL:

CO: RBC Royal Bank
ST: Ontario

-0- Jul/03/2013 10:00 GMT

Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.