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Nearly half of Canadians pay more attention to the weather than payday

In an online study conducted by Ketchum on behalf of Payments Canada, from June 30 to July 6 2022, 1,503 full-time and part-time employed Canadians were questioned about their payments. djs/GAC

For many Canadians, the best day of the week is when that paycheque hits the bank account, but according to a recent study, people aren’t bothering to check their cheques.

In an online study conducted by Angus Reid on behalf of Payments Canada, from June 30 to July 6, 2022, 1,503 full-time and part-time employed Canadians were questioned about their pay statements.

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The results included:

  • 46% of working Canadians pay more attention to the weather than their pay statements
  • 38% are unlikely to spot an employer’s pay discrepancy
  • 35% find reviewing their pay information daunting
  • 34% only focus on pay details when it’s time to file their taxes
  • 23% would feel uncomfortable asking their employer to explain income deduction details on their pay statement

“With around $971 billion paid in annual wages and benefits to Canadians and a complex and evolving array of deductions, it’s inevitable that on occasion mistakes and discrepancies happen,” a press release from Payments Canada states.

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According to new research commissioned by Payments Canada, many working Canadians do not feel well-equipped in understanding their pay statements with 38% who think it’s “unlikely they would catch any discrepancies.”

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According to Kristina Logue, the CFO of Payments Canada, the survey was really about understanding how Canadians handle their paycheque.

“The intention behind the study was really to explore working-Canadians’ sentiments and their level of understanding about their paycheque and how the modernization of payments can improve that understanding and experience,” Logue said.

Loque said the move to digital has made it easier to see if you’ve been paid, rather than checking the fine details of your payment.

“Our bank accounts now a direct deposit, which really safe, really fast, really efficient,” she explained. “There’s no need to go and check your pay stub because you just look at your bank account and see it’s there.”

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Moving forward, she said research and information on pay statements is the best way for people to make sure their payments are done correctly.

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“Working Canadians (often) don’t know what they’re supposed to be looking for on their pay stub. So that lack of understanding is really driving, in my opinion, why we’re not taking the time to review these paystubs.”

Logue argues it is up to the employer to be transparent and help Canadians understand what goes into their paycheque.

“I think there’s a really huge opportunity here as our payment systems modernize and evolve to offer solutions to help employees and employers work together so that the data travels more seamlessly with the payment,” Logue said.

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