Bucked up Brits: Consumers’ money worries wane, but more so for men than women

02 September 2015

  • More consumers now believe their household is coping well financially
  • People in their forties have shown the greatest improvement in financial confidence
  • Women worry much more than men about their household finances

The majority of consumers are no longer feeling the pinch when it comes to their finances, according to the latest research from Halifax, which shows that four fifths (80%) of consumers now believe their household is coping well financially. A quarter (25%) of consumers believe they are better off now than they were in 2014, up from 22% last year and over half (57%) of consumers now say they never run out of money before the end of the month, up 5% since last year.

A quarter (25%) of people still believe they are worse off now than they were in 2014, however this is an improvement on the 31% saying this last year. Just one in 10 (12%) of 20 to 29 year olds say that they are coping badly, which has almost halved since last year (down from 21%).

Money mid-life crisis averted
While last year’s research showed that people in their 40s felt much worse about their finances than any other age group, this year has shown a significant improvement. Three quarters (74%) of this age group believe their household is coping well financially, an increase of 6% in the past year. Furthermore, 23% are feeling better off than they did 12 months ago, two percentage points below the national average but a significant improvement compared with 2014 where only one in six felt better off (16%). A quarter (24%) of 40 to 49 year olds say they are coping badly with their finances, down from 28% last year.

Nick Young, Halifax Current Accounts said:
“While it’s reassuring that some consumers are starting to feel relief when it comes to the financial pressures they have faced over the past few years, one in four do still believe they are worse off than they were in 2014. As such, it is important for people to maintain a close watch on their finances, managing their budgets carefully in order to reduce the risk of surprises at the end of the month and make the most of their money.”

Men versus women
Despite women considering themselves more organised than men when it comes to money matters, they seem to worry much more than men about balancing the household books. On average, more women than men say they are very organized when it comes to managing money day-to-day, that they always make sure they have money saved for a rainy day and that they are never late when paying bills. However 6% more women than men admit to buying things when they can’t really afford them and 8% more admit to dipping into savings to pay for these items.

Fewer women feel better off than they did this time last year when compared to men, with more women saying they feel worse off than men. More women are worried about their ability to pay their rent/mortgage or having enough income to cover living costs and pay off debts.

There is also a significant difference in how men and women feel about their financial futures, with half of women (50%) feeling worried about their ability to save for the future, compared to just over a third (37%) of men. More men (28%) think their households’ financial situation will get better in the next year than women (23%).