‘One in five adults has less than £100 savings’

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Nearly one in five adults has less than £100 in savings, according to a survey.

Indicating a widening gap in Britain’s financial wellbeing, a similar proportion of people — 20 per cent — have increased their monthly savings during the pandemic.

In a survey carried out for Yorkshire Building Society, which has an ambition to help more people to save, it emerged that 19 per cent of adults had less than £100 in savings, while 21 per cent of people were not saving, compared with 12 per cent when similar research was carried out in 2019.

Thirteen per cent of people have no savings to fall back on at all and more than a quarter have less than £500 put away.

More positively, nearly a fifth of people surveyed had reduced their outstanding debt during the pandemic.

Tina Hughes, director of savings at Yorkshire Building Society, said: “Our new research continues to highlight just how fragile many people’s finances are, with the shocking figure that nearly a fifth of all UK adults have less than £100 in savings.

“It also shows the further widening of the financial wellbeing gap in the UK. While we know it can be hard for people to put money away, especially with rising living costs and in a low-interest environment, we mustn’t overlook the impact saving has on people’s financial and mental wellbeing.”

The society highlighted the impact financial wellbeing has on people’s mental health, with more than a fifth of people having sleepless nights because of money worries.

Two fifths of those surveyed felt stress about their finances and more than a third felt that the financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic had increased their stress levels.

Hughes said: “Now more than ever, with current and potential future economic uncertainty, it’s important for people to try to build their financial resilience and for us as a society to help people to save.

“Money worries can make people anxious, so we want them to know they don’t have to suffer in silence and we’re here to help them to manage their money during difficult times.”