Brits squirm when talking money, finds Starling

By Ryan Weeks on Monday 30 July 2018

Editor's PickDigital Banking

Yet around half say that talking about money improves their financial confidence.

New research from Starling Bank has found that just 22 per cent of people are comfortable discussing their finances with family and friends. This figure stacks up against 61, 67, 46 and 29 per cent who are comfortable discusses their weight, political beliefs, mental health and sex lives respectively.

In a bid to promote positive change, the app bank has released footage of a people's bare bodies covered in transaction-based tattoos, such as ‘£38 for private health insurance’ (see below). It’s part of a new promotional series featuring folks from a range of backgrounds and ages.

2,000 UK adults were surveyed by YouGov in compiling the research.

Around half said that taking advice or talking about money improves their financial confidence. Furthermore, every single respondent to the survey said they had felt either uncomfortable, unhappy, stressed or embarrassed when discussing money in the past.

Men and women share equally in the discomfort of talking about money, with just 22 per cent of each gender group claiming not to.  

Budgeting is a big issue. 60 per cent of respondents indicated that sticking to a budget is the best way of alleviating their financial stress and yet 89 per cent of those keeping a budget end up breaking it.

42 per cent of millennials are chilled, so to speak, about discussing their salary and bank balance with family and friends, versus a mere 10 per cent of people over 55. Starling says that the results of its survey found that higher earning individuals are just as likely to discuss money matters with friends as those earning less, although it noted discrepancies, such as that people from ABC1 backgrounds are more likely to be comfortable about what they earn (75 per cent) than people from C2DE backgrounds (65 per cent).

Unsurprisingly, the survey also found a strong correlation between people talking about their money and understanding their own financial habits. 52 per cent of respondents over the age of 45 are in the dark about what they spend each month on such things as food, transport and nights out. Among 19-45 year-olds, less than a third are unclear about such matters. 

Starling’s CEO Anne Boden (pictured) said in a statement: “It’s brilliant to see that a change is occurring in our attitudes towards money. The fact that younger generations are opening up to each other about money can only be a good thing for our wider financial health. Starling Bank was founded with the mission of helping people see their money in a new way, and our features enable users to have a clear view of their spending and saving - giving them a better understanding of their overall financial situation. Despite these positives, these figures show there’s still a long way to go - we may never remove all sense of discomfort around our finances - but this study proves that talking about money is a step in the right direction.”


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