Latest CIBC Angus Reid poll: Is it 34% won’t take advantage of new TFSA limits or 42% who will?

Click for TFSA details.
Click for TFSA details.

TFSA 2Media bias is sometimes subtle in the liberal mainstream media and on Internet news sites. Other times, like today, it’s not subtle at all.

For example, there is a column posted on National Newswatch about a CIBC sponsored Angus Reid poll. It has the catchy headline that “A third of Canadians won’t take advantage of new TFSA limits.

Yet, when you click on the link, the inside title states that only “10 percent of those surveyed plan to max out TFSA annual limit.

Yet, in fact, neither result seems to be completely accurate.

Specificially, if you read the original source for this poll at PRNewswire, you will see something else again in a table under the heading “Awareness.” It indicates that 38% of those surveyed said, “I haven’t yet but intend to [contribute to my TFSA],” while another 4% say “they have already topped up their TFSA account.”

So, if you add those two numbers together you get 42% of those surveyed have or plan to take advantage of the new limit of $10,000 — not the “10%” in the heading.

Big difference!

Meaning, not only are the headlines misleading, so are the stated outcomes. In fact, the whole poll is questionable. For instance, in the PRNewswire column we read: “On April 30 and May 4, 2015, an online survey was conducted among 3,011 randomly selected Canadian adults who are Angus Reid Forum panelists.”  (My underlining.)

Sorry, but if you are a member of the Angus Reid online site, you have NOT been randomly selected per se because it is a self-select group to begin with. Meaning, the research was not done using a traditional random sample.

Regardless, the crux of the matter is that this CIBC Angus Reid poll is meant only to undermine the new Conservative Government initiative of raising the TFSA limit from $5,500 to $10,000 — by claiming that few Canadians intend to do so.

When,  in reality, based on Angus Reid’s own figures, up to 42% of those surveyed actually plan to “up” their contribution level, if they haven’t already.


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Sandy is a retired educator, author & former conservative political strategist. She operated the first "Crux of the Matter" from 2006 until 2017 and opened this "Crux of the Matter 2.0" blog in late August, 2018.

21 thoughts on “Latest CIBC Angus Reid poll: Is it 34% won’t take advantage of new TFSA limits or 42% who will?

  1. I have never understood the opposition parties and the media party’s great outrage over Harper raising the TFSA contribution limit. Even if no one took advantage of it, does it cost taxpayers anything? – no! So what exactly is the problem.
    If Canadians are in a position to utilize and contribute to a TFSA, I think it’s a fantastic savings option for all taxpayers, whether you just put in a bit or max it out. Anyone who can’t afford or doesn’t want to take advantage of a TFSA is not penalized for not doing so, so again, what exactly is the opposition and media’s problem with this, other than the fact that Harper came up with it? I’ve yet to hear any rational argument.


  2. Good questions Guffman. The whole effort to undermine the gov’t initiative makes no sense.


  3. I saw exactly the same thing. NationalNewswatch is getting more and more biased all the time. They give daily airtime for Michael Harris to do his rant (where you can’t comment that he’s full of it). This headline made me think well if 34% won’t take advantage, does that mean there is 66% that do? Then I read into the article and got even more discouraged.


  4. Maps — That was my first thought as well. So, that means 66% who do?

    If you look at all the numbers, it goes like this: 18% contribute but less than the limit, 12% do not contribute at all, 4% have other savings plans, 20% don’t have a TFSA yet, 7% want to open one, 10% didn’t know — and so on. A meaningless survey apart from 84% of people aged 55 or older contribute as much as they can and that 42% of everyone else who contributes to some degree.

    Misleading to say the least.


  5. I would say that close to 70% take advantage and love the TFSA.That is the story.The Conservatives have awinner in the TFSA. The 34% bs is probably welfare,unemployed and just plain lazy lowlifes.They don,t pay taxes,they contribute nothing to society,they are the takers and complainers, but yet are the group that gets all the headlines.THE HEADLINE SHOULD BE**CANADIANS OVERWHELMINGLY LOVE THE TFSA**


  6. Wife and I met with our banker today. Just retired and am going from 0-100% invested in TFSA tomorrow. Thanks Steve!


  7. I guess in addition to having conniptions over TFSAs, the anti-Harperites’ heads will now explode because Finance Minister Oliver said today in QP that the government was exploring upping contributions to the CPP/QPP on a voluntary basis. They just cannot cope with the notion some people want to have options, not relying solely on government for handouts.

    It’s the same kind of sketchy numbers game, with a couple of columnists (A. Coyne & Don Martin) praising Alberta Premier Rachel Notley for limiting her cabinet to 12 whereas the current federal cabinet numbers 39. Of course, no mention of the difference in population numbers of Alberta & Canada, nor the difference in number of departments the two jurisdictions have to administer. And to boot, Coyne omits this bit of info: “Under the chairmanship of Paul Martin, the number increased again to 39 [the same number as PM Harper’s], in the vicinity of which it has remained …”


  8. While it is laudable to have smaller cabinets it sometimes is unwise. If the minister is to be responsible for what happens in the department then maybe the ministry should be of a size where the minister can properly oversee the department. Super ministers like C.D. Howe and Don Mazankowski were brilliant but their super minister status also contributed to their government’s downfall.


  9. Their agenda is to undermine this government by any means possible, so dishonesty and outright fabrication of “news” will continue. This is exactly why I and so many others never rely on the MSM or Media Party for factual reporting. Every time you think they have hit the bottom of the barrel, you discover how wrong you were.


  10. I agree smaller may be better — in theory. The two you mention, while brilliant, most likely did not have to contend with the same conditions and daily barrage of questioning & public scrutiny that today’s ministers have to deal with.

    I would have to do more research to find out if during Mackenzie King’s tenure, whom Andrew Coyne cites as an example of a PM who worked with a small cabinet even during WWII, there was a Heritage department or an Environment department. My point? Some areas were the domain of other institutions, not the government — education & health, for instance, did not become Quebec departments until 1964 & 1970 respectively (info from and ramq.gouv web sites). The city of Montreal has 65 elected officials: the mayor of Montréal, who is also the mayor of Ville-Marie borough,
    plus 18 borough mayors and 46 city councillors (from portal). But there’s been some progress. Montreal used to have 105 city councillors!


  11. tfsa,s cost taxpayers nothing. it drives me nuts when I see the media and socialists assuming my money is the governments money.


  12. when the TFSA’s started my wife and I did the same thing. I will say that my kids cannot because they have kids, a mortgage and all the expenses that go with having a family. when my family was young I did not have the ability to save at the level i did after they were grown and on their own. it is just logical.


  13. So it’s a bad thing to treat people like adults, give them choices, more opportunities for those who can to save for their retirement?

    The meddling ,conniving pollsters are in overdrive, it’s going to be a long haul from now to election day in October.


  14. Very simple…..if you don’t chose to contribute, don’t. If you do chose to contribute, do. Everyone else STFU.


  15. In fact TFSAs benefit all income groups, especially lower income for whom RRSP deductions are much less helpful, especially if they’re redeemed at the same or higher marginal tax rates, which is often the case. As hardworking Canadians move up the income ladder they can invest money in TFSAs and redeem them at no tax despite being at higher income and tax levels later in life as they gain more experience and skills.

    For the sake of “fairness” apparently we must take away any possible benefit for anyone, no matter how poor or hardworking, because somebody “rich” somewhere will also benefit. The progressives have no problem putting it to the poor in their quest to milk & punish the rich.

    They gleefully pile on carbon taxes and raise electricity levels in spite of their regressive effect on the poorest in society. They’re poorer but apparently they have social justice, so all is well. Single income families with children can’t be treated fairly because apparently Conrad Black would get a tax cut too.

    I have asked people to counter my argument that the Harper government has greatly reduced taxes/benefit for lower income Canadians through the UCCB, Canada Employment Amount and WITP, along with reduced marginal tax rates. The boilerplate response I receive is that some “rich” person got “more” so no relief for anyone. The fact their argument is invalid matters not.

    As Margaret Thatcher famously said statists/socialist “would rather the poor were poorer provided the rich were less rich.”

    Now the Grits want to move the tax bar lower where individuals earning over $45,000 per year start to pay more under the plan, despite their new commercials claiming somebody, somewhere gets $2500 more per year.

    The NDP is no better, wishing to force entry level workers into the unemployment lines with a $15/hr minimum wage, but with generous daycare provisions for the same wealthy Canadians they abhor. How this takes the pressure off middle income Canadians is anyone’s guess.


  16. Well said Shamrock! Thank you. I hope you don’t mind but I have put paragraphs in your comment so that it is easier for everyone to read.


  17. Yes they need a broken Canada so they can call on their statist friends to fix it. The truth is Canada is prosperous and free, and our PM is a senior international statesman who has gained respect for his steady handling of the country, through many crises and fiscal temptations.

    Because of this the progressives must float false narratives and memes about Harper being mean and “corrupt” (a definition not accorded the NDP in spite of their recent, stubborn refusal to pay back unentitled taxpayer largesse); about the “middle class” (that’s a Marxist meme implying incorrectly that people are stuck in “their station in life”) being in “crisis.” Somehow, raising taxes on poorer and middle income Canadians, crushing employment in service/entry markets with a $15 minimum wage (OK just federal employees for the time being), and burdening Canada with a daycare white elephant, will make us better off.

    How can we promote social justice by destroying productive factors in our economy in favour of transactions of decline, fuelled by envy, mistrust and waste?

    At some point the Grits and NDP will be required by the voter to pull their themes together into a coherent and costed platform. The Grits are incapable of formulating realistic policy and the Dippers can’t be clear because their plans lack any fiscal cohesion.

    Then we can get into security and international issues. I was listening to the radio yesterday and a lady was waxing poetically about how refreshing Mr Trudeau was. When asked if she would vote for him she gleefully replied “oh yes he’s wonderful!” When asked if he was fit for the job of PM, she hesitatingly opined “I think so,” and when queried about how he would perform on the international stage, she could only muster “oh, my.”

    Can anyone expect Mr Mulcair to present a coherent picture of himself as PM here and internationally with his disdain for any kind of collective security, while promoting domestic and international collectivism? Oh my!


  18. Canadians at all income levels do not save enough. Anything that encourages savings and investment, across all income levels, including helping lower income Canadians get ahead, is a good thing. That’s why I agree with you TFSAs are a winner for the Tories; it’s not a wedge issue the opposition can use to divide Canadians, as is their obvious strategy now.

    The recent abject failure of the opposition to label TFSAs only for the “rich” is strong evidence Canadians agree. Canadians don’t care if some rich guy gets ahead further than they do as long as they also benefit. Trying to turn voters into envious and ideological malcontents is a losing strategy, but they will try because they have nothing else to offer.

    To be clear, it is not the Conservatives who are fighting a two front war, except perhaps in some parts of BC – and in the minds of the consortium coalition – as they and the Dippers pick away at the Grit left and right flanks. I would not be surprised if the upcoming election finished the Grits as a force in federal politics, as happened in Great Britain, especially given their paucity of leadership and their latest, disastrous political band aid attempt to regain power with an inexperienced and incoherent leader.

    The true heavyweights left in their party, such as John Manley and Frank McKenna, will stay on the sidelines until the party loses its statist tendencies. Chances are that will never happen.

    We are probably reverting to a two party system in Canada which is not necessarily good news though it is what it is.


  19. And why does anyone HAVE to maximize on the TFSA limit? We have a nice savings account which by the way has been doing really well lately and we’re not maxed out…Why all the fuss about the middle class not having enough laying around to top their accounts up. Just save what ever you can!!


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