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BMO Launches Savings Builder Account to Help Canadians Get Into the Habit of Saving

- New account rewards Canadians who save on regular basis with a market-leading interest rate

- BMO Household Savings Report reveals 19 per cent of Canadians did not put any savings aside in 2014

- Nearly half of Canadians feel they are not on track to meet their savings goals in the year ahead

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 7, 2015) - BMO Bank of Montreal today announced the launch of a first-of-its-kind savings account, designed to help Canadians save more by rewarding them with bonus interest for making regular monthly savings contributions.

The BMO Savings Builder Account offers Canadians an industry-leading rate of 1.3 per cent when they increase their savings by $200 or more each month. Customers can also take advantage of an additional introductory offer where they can receive 2.5 per cent on their savings until June 30, 2015.

"While Canadians have been taking steps to address aspects of their personal finances - such as paying down debt - the most recent industry data show the household savings rate in Canada hit a five-year low in the fourth quarter of 2014," said Ernie Johannson, Head of North American Retail Payments and Personal Banking Canada, BMO Financial Group. "With this in mind, we have introduced the Savings Builder Account to encourage Canadians to use the power of savings and earn more when you save on a regular basis. Even a little goes a long way, and it's never too early to get into the habit. Our message is simple: save, earn, repeat."

According to the BMO Household Savings Report, more Canadians are making saving a habit by using a fixed savings plan that includes monthly contributions. In fact, one-in-three Canadians (31 per cent) have a fixed savings plan in place heading into 2015, a year-over-year increase of 19 per cent.

However, the report also found that 19 per cent did not save anything in 2014. Also, 40 per cent do not feel they are saving enough to meet their goals for the coming year, with one in three (31 per cent) citing their lack of a plan as a barrier.

Furthermore, according to Statistics Canada, Canada's household saving rate hit a five-year low of 3.6 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2014. Over the last 10 years, the average household savings rate is 4 per cent, down from 7.9 per cent during the 1990s.

"This account addresses a gap in the needs of customers looking to meet and exceed their savings goals, including saving for a down payment on a home, a child's education or for a rainy day," said Ms. Johannson. "Achieving any goal - financial or otherwise - means putting a realistic plan in place while establishing a routine or behavioural habit to ensure you can meet and exceed what you set out to accomplish."

For more information on the BMO Savings Builder Account, please click here.

The 2015 BMO Savings Report was completed by Pollara between March 13th and March 16th, 2015, with an online sample of 1,002 Canadians. A probability sample of this size would yield results accurate to ± 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20. Data has been weighted by region, gender, and age, based on the most recent Census figures, so that it is representative of all adult Canadians.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified financial services organization based in North America. The bank offers a broad range of retail banking, wealth management and investment banking products and services to more than 12 million customers. BMO Financial Group had total assets of approximately $672 billion and more than 47,000 employees at January 31, 2015.

For further information:
Media Contacts:
Matt Duffin, Toronto
(416) 867-3996

Valerie Doucet, Montreal
(514) 877-8224

Twitter: @BMOMedia

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