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As the cost-of-living crisis persists, nearly half of all Canadians say money is their leading source of stress, according to a survey from FP Canada.

The portion of people citing money as their primary concern has steadily increased from 38% in 2022 to 40% in 2023, reaching 44% in 2024, the professional body’s latest Financial Stress Index revealed.

Canadians cited elevated grocery prices (69%), general inflation (60%) and housing-related costs (52%) as the leading causes of their financial stress.

The survey also found that, while financial stress is on the rise, Canadians are prioritizing their financial health and feeling more hopeful than they did a year ago.

Roughly 91% of Canadians are taking actions to reduce their financial stress. And about 50% of Canadians surveyed said they feel optimistic about their financial futures, compared to 47% of Canadians who expressed that sentiment in 2023.

FP Canada, a credentialing body for financial planners, said working with a financial planner could help alleviate financial stress.

The professional body noted that Canadians who work with a financial professional, such as a certified financial planner, are 33% less likely to be stressed about money and 23% less likely to have lost sleep about financial worries than those who do not.

Moreover, those who work with a financial professional are more optimistic about their financial futures (56%) than those who don’t use a planner (48%).

“The value of working with a financial professional extends beyond the numbers on paper. By providing expert guidance, financial planners help alleviate the burden of financial worry, even in the face of uncertainty,” FP Canada said in a release.

FP Canada commissioned Leger to conduct an online survey between Feb. 28 and March 11 and received 2,040 respondents nationwide. Online polls cannot be assigned a margin of error because they do not randomly sample the population.