It is well known that volatility persistence is overestimated if regime shifts are not accounted for in the standard GARCH model. This research detects time periods of sudden changes in variance using the iterated cumulated sums of squares (ICSS) algorithm. Using weekly data for the Canadian stock market indicates that after accounting for endogenously determined volatility shifts in the GARCH model, the estimated persistence in volatility is significantly reduced. This casts some doubt on previous findings that volatility in financial markets is highly persistent. The findings have important implications for investors and financial market participants.