UK, 11 February, 2021: Finances are top of a lot of people’s minds at the moment, with 52% of British adults making managing their finances a priority this year. However, this new financial focus could be jeopardised by a national reticence to speak openly about our finances. More than half of the people (53%) polled by Experian believe there’s a stigma around poor money management, and two fifths (40%) never talk about money with their friends and family.
The study found that many of us want better financial health, as 79% acknowledge that making sure their finances are in order will be better for them in the long run. Just under half (48%) of those polled said the Coronavirus pandemic had made them more conscious of their financial situation – with 33% of adults looking to increase their savings and 21% planning to reduce their credit card debt.
Negative attitudes and fear of judgement from others impacting consumers’ financial confidence
But the research found consumers could be hindered by lingering negative attitudes to money and fear of judgement from other people. Almost a third (32%) of adults in their 30s have been told they’re ‘bad with money.’ Meanwhile, over a quarter (26%) said they ‘feel bad’ about their financial situation, a sentiment that rises significantly among young adults to 43% of those in their 30s and 32% of those under 30. One in five (20%) of all respondents also said they felt embarrassment over debts.
This could be impacting consumers’ financial confidence. Over two in five (43%) admit they want to feel more confident with their financial plans. The research found that consumers consider themselves less capable of achieving their financial resolutions than other common goals related to changes in their physical appearance and wellbeing, such as sticking to new exercise regimes and diets.
It’s time to be money positive!
The majority (58%) of Brits agreed that, as a society, we need to be less judgmental of others’ financial circumstances. In fact, a similar proportion (57%) of people think that open discussions around financial health should be encouraged, in the same way we have transparent conversations about our mental and physical health.
Working with The Vivienne – the reigning queen of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK – Experian is launching a new ‘Money Positive’ campaign to encourage more healthy, open discussions about money and give people the tools and support to pursue their financial goals. Following her own financial struggles, The Vivienne is encouraging people to apply the same approach they take towards being ‘body positive’ to their money and take control of their financial health.
The Vivienne, RuPaul’s Drag Race UK winner comments: “We talk a lot about how having a body positive attitude can impact our overall wellbeing. So now I’m encouraging people to become ‘money positive’ too by having more open and honest conversations about money.
“I got into all sorts of financial trouble before I won Drag Race last year – I left bills unpaid and got into debt – because I didn’t know any better. I wasn’t taught about the importance of things like a good credit score in school, and I didn’t talk about it with my friends or family about it either. I want people to learn from my experiences, that’s why I’m working with Experian to help people take control of their finances and reach their own goals.”
James Jones, Head of Consumer Affairs at Experian comments “A positive thing to arise from the pandemic is our determination to get into good habits – whether that’s getting physically fitter or trying to get our finances into better shape. Almost four in five people know that getting their finances in order will be better for them in the long run – but social stigma can be a huge barrier.
“Most people haven’t had any formal financial education, and many lack confidence in their ability to make good choices. Our ‘Money Positive’ campaign has been designed to equip people with the guidance and support to start managing their money. A key step is engaging with your credit score. To help people take control of their credit scores, we recently launched Experian Boost, a new free service that can instantly improve your score”.
Experian Boost is the UK’s first service to give consumers the ability to instantly improve their credit score for free, using information such as regular payments to video and music streaming services and council tax, that have not been factored into scores before.
People can access and find out more information about Experian Boost at www.experian.co.uk/consumer/experian-boost.html
Rajan Lakhani, Head of PR, Consumer, UK&I, Experian
Tel: (+44) 07976 634 484 | E: email@example.com
Brands2Life, PR agency
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About the research
Experian commissioned Opinium to survey a nationally representative sample of 2,000 UK consumers, between 22nd – 26th January 2021.
Experian is the world’s leading global information services company. During life’s big moments – from buying a home or a car, to sending a child to college, to growing a business by connecting with new customers – we empower consumers and our clients to manage their data with confidence. We help individuals to take financial control and access financial services, businesses to make smarter decisions and thrive, lenders to lend more responsibly, and organisations to prevent identity fraud and crime.
We have 17,800 people operating across 45 countries and every day we’re investing in new technologies, talented people and innovation to help all our clients maximise every opportunity. We are listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and are a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.
Learn more at www.experianplc.com or visit our global content hub at our global news blog for the latest news and insights from the Group.