In 2024, How Much Wealth Do Canadians Have at Different Ages?

The financial landscape in Canada is constantly evolving, and understanding your net worth within this context is crucial for informed financial planning. Net worth serves as a snapshot of your overall financial health, reflecting the difference between your assets (what you own) and liabilities (what you owe).

By analyzing net worth by age group, you can gain valuable insights into how wealth accumulates over time in Canada. This knowledge empowers you to benchmark yourself against your peers and identify areas for improvement in your financial journey.

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This comprehensive guide delves into the net worth landscape in Canada, exploring both median and average net worth figures across different age groups. We’ll also explore how net worth varies by province and unpack the factors influencing wealth accumulation throughout life stages.

Demystifying Median vs. Average Net Worth

Before diving into the data, it’s essential to understand the distinction between median and average net worth. The median net worth represents the middle value within a dataset. Imagine arranging all Canadians by their net worth from lowest to highest. The median value sits right in the middle, splitting the population in half.

On the other hand, average net worth is calculated by adding up all the net worth values in a dataset and dividing by the total number of entries. This method can be skewed by outliers, such as individuals with exceptionally high net worth. These outliers can significantly inflate the average, making it less representative of the wealth distribution for most Canadians.

Therefore, the median net worth is generally considered a more accurate reflection of wealth distribution in a population. It provides a clearer picture of where most Canadians stand financially.

Median Net Worth by Age in Canada (2019 Data)

Statistics Canada provides valuable insights into net worth by age group. Let’s explore the median net worth figures based on the most recent data available (2019):

  • Age Group | Median Net Worth (CAD) *—|—|
  • Under 35 | $48,800
  • 35 to 44 | $234,400
  • 45 to 54 | $521,100
  • 55 to 64 | $690,000
  • 65 and over | $543,200
In 2024, How Much Wealth Do Canadians Have at Different Ages?

As evident from the table, net worth tends to increase with age. This trend can be attributed to several factors:

  • Career Progression: As individuals climb the career ladder, their salaries typically increase, allowing them to accumulate savings and invest in assets.
  • Debt Repayment: Young adults often carry student loan debt, which can significantly impact their net worth in their early years. As they pay down these debts, their net worth starts to climb.
  • Inheritance: Some individuals may receive inheritances later in life, which can provide a substantial boost to their net worth.

The most significant increase in median net worth occurs between the 35-44 and 45-54 age groups. This can likely be explained by two key factors:

  1. Student Loan Burden: Many Canadians in their 20s are saddled with student loan debt, hindering their net worth accumulation in their early careers.
  2. Early Career Earnings: Salaries tend to be lower in the early stages of one’s career. As individuals gain experience and move up the corporate ladder, their earnings typically increase, contributing to a rise in net worth.

A Closer Look at Average Net Worth (2020 Data)

To gain a more comprehensive understanding of wealth distribution, let’s explore average net worth figures provided by Statistics Canada, categorized by economic families (households) and individuals (data from 2020):

  • Age Group | Average Net Worth (Households) | Average Net Worth (Individuals) *—|—|—|
  • Under 35 | $336,100 | $79,100
  • 35 to 44 years old | $589,300 | $212,500
  • 45 to 54 years old | $1,123,200 | $451,700
  • 55 to 64 years old | $1,401,900 | $544,800
  • 65 years and over | $1,298,800 | $589,700
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Economic families encompass spouses/common-law partners, children, and relatives residing in the same household. As expected, the average net worth of households is considerably higher than that of individuals. This is likely due to combined incomes and shared assets within a household.

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