Despite economic improvements, a large portion of Canadians expects to work past the traditional retirement age of 65, mainly due to financial concerns.

Sun Life Financial’s annual Canadian Unretirement Index, out today, has found that 63% of respondents expect they will need to work past age 66 compared with 37% wanting to work. Only 27% of Canadians expect to be fully retired at 66—that’s a significant decline from the study’s 2008 number of 51%.

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Additionally, with Canadians expecting to be retired for an average of 20 years, 38% say there is a serious risk of outliving their retirement savings.

Medical expenses, too, are a concern for many Canadians, with 31% indicating that they are not at all confident that they will have enough money to cover these costs in retirement.

“The dream of being able to afford a full retirement at age 66 is declining among Canadians; it’s being replaced by the reality that many people expect to be working beyond the traditional retirement age,” said Kevin Dougherty, president of Sun Life Financial Canada. “The aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008 has had a lasting impact, with more Canadians expecting they will need to work longer as a result.”

For the first time in five years of conducting the study, Canadians who expect to be retired at 66 (27%) is almost equal to Canadians who expect to be working full time at 66 (26%). Also, almost 32% expect to be working part time at 66, and about 15% are not certain.

Copyright © 2020 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on

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