Q&A: RRSP losses

Question: Can one lose the principal amount contributed into an RRSP? Everyone is saying how much they are losing – am I right in assuming they are referring to the income the plan should or has made? – Audrey U.

Gordon Pape answers: You can certainly lose money in an RRSP – not just investment earnings but the funds you have contributed. Unfortunately, when that happens you cannot claim a tax loss nor can you replace the lost principal. It’s gone, period. That’s why I constantly advise people to invest their RRSP money conservatively. You should not take big risks with your retirement nest egg.

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