Consumer confidence is on the upswing for (some) Canadians

If you live in Alberta and Ontario, you might be smiling a little bit more than residents of Quebec and British Columbia.

“Residents of Ontario and Alberta are more likely than those in Quebec and British Columbia to feel better off financially compared to a year ago,” says a new survey by financial advising firm Investors Group.

Overall, 28 percent of Canadians feel “they will be better off financially a year from now,” and 50 percent feel “during the next five years, Canadians will have continuous periods of good times.”

While these are only perceptions, it’s also true that consumer confidence is what drives the economy.

“There is no question that the financial meltdown had a significant psychological impact on consumer confidence and sentiment,” says Investors Group chairman Allan Gregg. “Like the real economy however, we are now starting to see a slow but steady upturn in both the general population’s sense of financial well-being.”

Jeff Schwartz, executive director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, noticed two other intriguing facts from the survey: 21 percent of Canadians say they’re “better off financially compared to a year ago,” and 50 percent feel “now is a great time to make a major purchase.”

“If Canadians are doing better financially, that means they can pay down stubborn debt that’s costing them money,” Schwartz says. “But if only 21 percent are doing better, then why do 50 percent think this is a good time to make a major purchase?”

Schwartz wants to make sure Canadians don’t become overconfident and overspend. For a helpful guide that will help you stay on the straight and narrow path when it comes to wise spending, check out Consolidated Credit’s Smart Spending Tips. If you’re already in over your head with credit card debt, trained counsellors are available to offer one-on-one assistance at 888-287-8506.

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