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Federal Economic and Fiscal Statement

Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty presented the Economic and Fiscal Statement of the federal  government this afternoon. Measures are proposed to offer temporary relief to seniors with  registered retirement investment funds (RRIFs) and to private pension funds affected by global financial market turbulence.

The government also proposes to reduce the required minimum withdrawal amount for RRIFs by 25% for 2008. Similar rules will apply to people receiving variable benefit payments under a money purchase registered pension plan.

Last week, the Minister of Finance sent an open letter to federally regulated financial  institutions about minimum withdrawal requirements for RRIFs. The letter asks that financial  institutions take measures to ensure that their clients are able to use in-kind asset  transfers, at no cost, rather than selling assets to meet minimum withdrawal requirements.  Further, it asks institutions to ensure that all clients with RRIFs are informed of this  option. (Click Here..)

(Chartered accountants based in Mississauga and Etobicoke)