Young investors set the record straight in RBC Direct Investing Insights Poll

Small Business Canada
  • Online investors aged 18 to 34 do have long-term goals
  • They do worry about their money
  • They don’t think they know everything

TORONTO, Feb. 22, 2022 – Young investors want to set the record straight. Contrary to popular belief, they aren’t all jumping online for quick, short-term gains. They do have long-term goals and they see investing as a way to support those goals. Also, while they believe they know more about investing than their parents think they do, they don’t think they know everything.

Since the arrival of COVID-19, there has been a surge in young adults aged 18 to 34 entering the world of self-directed investing. In fact, according to the 2022 RBC Direct Investing Young Investor Insights Poll, nearly one-half (48%) of DIY investors in this age group started during the pandemic.

“When so many young Canadians joined the ranks of self-directed investors, a number of misconceptions followed them,” notes Lori Darlington, President & CEO of RBC Direct Investing. “Their responses to our poll show they aren’t all jumping in and out of the market, looking for instant gains – they’re investing for the long term.”

Darlington adds that nearly half the new clients who have joined RBC’s online brokerage during the pandemic are under the age of 35. “We anticipate this generational shift will continue, as more young people seek to take control of their financial future.”

Young DIY investors surveyed also dismantled another misconception about their generation – that they demand instant gratification – by responding that they take a lot of time before acting on their investing decisions (77%) and like the challenge of researching and then acting on what they find out (87%). They also described their self-directed investments as an important part of their long-term financial goals (87%) and their future financial security (86%).

“We were also encouraged to see how many of these young adults want to learn more about investing,” says Darlington, noting that RBC’s online brokerage provides extensive resources, including in-depth, third-party research and analysis, for both new and more experienced investors. “We’ve always had a strong focus on helping Canadians of all ages understand how doing their own research and making their own trades can help support their financial future. We share ideas and inspiration on our site in a way we hope both intrigues and engages investors across generations and experience levels.”

Some recent examples from RBC Direct Investing’s Inspired Investor and Investing Academy publications include: What An Internet Hamster Can Teach Us About InvestingRising Inflation: How We Got Here and What’s To ComeHow To Find A Stock’s Real Value: A Pro Shares 5 Tools for Fundamental Analysis.

Darlington also notes the thirst for financial information began years ago for today’s young investors, as indicated in their responses to another poll question: What financial advice do you wish you had received from your parents’ generation? “The top response was ‘how to invest’, followed by ‘how to save’, ‘how to budget’, ‘how to manage day-to-day expenses while still saving for the future’ and ‘how to manage debt’. If today’s young investors can teach all those how-to tips to the generation which follows them, they’ll be setting that next generation up early for financial success.”

For more information about RBC Direct Investing, Inspired Investor and Investing Academy, please visit

(Canadian online investors aged 18 to 34)
Invest to reach long-term financial goals (85%)
Say DIY investing is an important part of their future financial security (86%)
See investing as a way to support what they want now as well as in the future (39%)
Say they understand investing better than their parents think they do (20%), but the majority wants to learn more (82% of all young adult current and potential DIY investors)
Invest (57%)
Save (46%)
Budget (44%)
Manage day-to-day expenses while still saving for the future (43%)
Manage debt (34%)
“If today’s young investors can teach all those how-to tips to the generation which follows them, they’ll be setting that next generation up early for financial success.” 
Lori Darlington, President & CEO, RBC Direct Investing

About the 2022 RBC Direct Investing Young Investor Insights Poll
These are the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of RBC. For the survey, a sample of n = 1530 investors aged 18 to 65 was surveyed online between October 26 to November 5, 2021. This sample includes 900 current DIY investors, and 630 who are interested in DIY investing. The results referenced in this document are based on n = 529 investors aged 18 to 34. The results are considered accurate to within ±2.9 points for the entire survey, and ±4.9 points for the results based on investors aged 18 to 34.

About RBC
Royal Bank of Canada is a global financial institution with a purpose-driven, principles-led approach to delivering leading performance. Our success comes from the 87,000+ employees who leverage their imaginations and insights to bring our vision, values and strategy to life so we can help our clients thrive and communities prosper. As Canada’s biggest bank, and one of the largest in the world based on market capitalization, we have a diversified business model with a focus on innovation and providing exceptional experiences to our 17 million clients in Canada, the U.S. and 27 other countries. Learn more at

We are proud to support a broad range of community initiatives through donations, community investments and employee volunteer activities. See how at

About RBC Direct Investing
A leading Canadian online brokerage, RBC Direct Investing is a wholly owned subsidiary of Royal Bank of Canada. RBC Direct Investing provides an intuitive, reliable trading experience through its three powerful trading platforms – the online investing site, the web-based Trading Dashboard and the Direct Investing experience on the RBC Mobile app – for self-directed investors who want to be in control of their investment decisions and have access to markets. The online brokerage provides extensive investor resources for both new and more experienced investors. The Inspired Investor Magazine offers a wealth of articles with investing insights and how-to resources, including a series of Investing Guides that can help investors at all experience levels find the answers they need quickly. Investors have access to in-depth third party research and earlier innovations such as Practice Accounts and the Community social network help investors increase their knowledge and confidence. Clients with account and trading inquiries also have access to experienced investment services representatives who can assist in multiple languages (English, French, Cantonese and Mandarin). In addition, all clients automatically have free access to real-time streaming quotes for stocks and ETFs. RBC Direct Investing is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund. For more information, please visit

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