The next five years could see a long `shift to thrift,’ an economist predicts

The trend toward saving more and shopping less could last for up to five years, as Canadians try to rebuild their personal savings amid languishing house and stock prices and painful memories of the recession, a new economic report suggests.

Calling it a “shift to thrift,” the report, by TD Bank economist Diana Petramala, says consumer savings rates are already on the rise and could continue to climb as Canadians try to regain a feeling of financial security.

Petramala predicts savings rates could rise to between 6 and 7 per cent – double the average of the preceding five years.

“Over the five years that preceded the current recession, Canadians had been on a shopping spree. Households bought new cars, fancy home furnishings, the latest fashions, and ate out at their favourite restaurants,” Petramala noted in a report released yesterday.

Read the full article by Dana Flavelle “Canadians hoarding their cash” in the Toronto Star (May 21 2009)

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