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- Patricia Lovett-Reid, TD Waterhouse offers advice on dealing with financial worries -


TORONTO, Nov. 9 /CNW/ - When it comes to managing their investments, only half of Canadian women say they are satisfied, with just 4% of those women saying they feel 'blissful' about their investments. And the other half? Forty-nine per cent say they feel concerned or often worried according to the 10th annual TD Waterhouse Female Investor Poll which surveyed women aged 45 to 64 who share in the responsibility of their household's finances.

"That feeling of 'bliss' may seem out of reach for most women, but what we often don't realize is that we have more power to shape our own financial future than we give ourselves credit for," says Patricia Lovett-Reid, Senior Vice President, TD Waterhouse. "The first step is deciding to take action."

Lovett-Reid offers the following steps to motivate women to take charge of their financial happiness:

<< 1. Build a team of trusted advisors: Those who seek professional advice are far more likely to have a financial plan (60%) than those who do not (16%). Those who have a financial plan are more likely to feel financially successful than those who do not (84% vs. 54%). Even for self-directed investors, a second opinion can be beneficial. 2. Invest early: Ninety-two per cent of women polled agree with investing as early as you can. However, only 33 per cent contribute to RRSPs. The power of time and compounding is further enhanced through the tax deferred growth of an RSP account. 3. Invest often: Only half of women say they follow a budget. People are always surprised by how much they can cut their discretionary spending. Invest your new found monthly savings through a systematic investment plan. The dollar cost averaging will help reduce the volatility in your portfolio. 4. Learn more, earn more: Women are becoming increasingly financially independent and seven in ten women now have investments in their own name. As with everything in life, when it comes to investing, knowledge is power. When you have a deeper understanding of the economy and the workings of the financial markets, you are better placed to implement investment strategies that could improve returns while reducing risk. 5. Be disciplined: Volatility in the markets can put you through a roller coaster of emotions. From fear and panic to optimism and euphoria, don't let emotions dictate your decision making and stick to your investment plan. >>

Delegating the day-to-day management of the investment accounts does not mean you abdicate your financial responsibilities. It's your life and your money, and ultimately what you do with your money is no one's choice but yours.

Financial success:

Sixty-three per cent of women describe themselves as financially successful. Similar to the poll results in previous years, the majority of Canadian women say that being financially successful does not mean enjoying the finer things in life like jewelry or a vacation property; it means being able to pay the bills on time and having enough money saved for emergencies.

The top five ways that women define financial success are:

<< - Always being able to pay your bills on time (70%) - Having enough money saved for emergencies (70%) - Having enough money saved for a comfortable retirement (69%) - Being debt-free (68%) - Having enough money to buy whatever you want (63%) >>

"Looking ahead to your retirement years, it's important for women to measure their financial success against specific and targeted investment goals," says Lovett-Reid. "While being able to pay the bills and having money saved for emergencies are essential, women need to ask themselves important questions like 'am I going to be able to retire early?' 'will I be able to maintain my current lifestyle in retirement?' 'what sort of legacy can I leave behind for my children?' When defining overall financial success, women should evaluate how satisfied they are with the response to the questions that matter most to them."

What is the definition of wealthy?

The definition of wealth varies widely among the women polled. To feel wealthy, 16% of women would need more than $1 million in investable household financial assets, while 27% would need $300,000 to $999,999. Another quarter would need less than $50,000 to feel wealthy. Compared to their ideal, many women have a long way to go. One quarter say they have no household financial assets (24%), while 30% have less than $50,000. One-third (33%) have $100,000 to $999,999 and only one percent say they have more than $1 million.

About the TD Waterhouse Female Investor Poll

The TD Waterhouse Female Investor Poll surveyed 1,010 adult women aged 45-64 who share in the responsibility of planning the finances for their households. Results for this study were collected through an online survey of Canadian women investors by Environics Research Group, conducted between August 20-27, 2010.

About TD Bank Financial Group

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves more than 18 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$603 billion in assets on July 31, 2010. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

TD Waterhouse represents the products and services offered by TD Waterhouse Canada Inc. (Member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund), TD Waterhouse Private Investment Counsel Inc., TD Waterhouse Insurance Services Inc., TD Waterhouse Private Banking (offered by The Toronto-Dominion Bank) and TD Waterhouse Private Trust (offered by The Canada Trust Company).

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