Research in Ireland has found that women tend to be better than men at saving money. Of course, such ‘data’ will likely fuel the old ‘it’s official, women are better than men at something else – add that to the list above driving, multi-tasking and smelling nice,’ argument that has been muttered, countered, and accepted since the dawn of time. Yet, it also shows something more positive, i.e. that a nation also looks to be battling its way out of recession quite successfully – and that more people may now be aware of the importance of savings.
The research (collected and available at postbank.ie) shows that more than half (58 percent) of men and women asked in their Quarterly Savings Index consider the female of the species to be the better savers. Women themselves are confident that they the most frugal gender, with 65 percent claiming that they were the best savers. Yet, the actual statistics pitch men and women closer together – with 80 percent of men and 82 percent of women saving regularly – whilst men are said to put more away, with a third of those asked stating that they saved €250 a month.
The data is a good sign. The number of people devoted to saving is the highest in years, and the primary reason for doing so is security. This is a fact that is evident when one acknowledges the average decline in interest rates across the country – similar to that which is being seen in the UK and the rest of Europe – but it has also been backed up by nearly half (49 percent) of the Postbank respondents who admitted they were concerned about the safety of their money at a time when possible unemployment is a lingering reality.
However, the risk of unemployment is clearly not the only reason that many are eager to put some money away each month. Clearly the system is showing its worth aside from the benefits of interest available at times outside of recession. With a small proportion of our income being deposited into our savings account automatically, it is easier to forget it is happening, and less easy for us to spend it without thinking. There is a barrier that doesn’t exist when you’re stuffing cash into your mattress.
With the global economic crisis, the public are seemingly reassessing the importance of saving and how it can best be managed at a time when it is seen as both difficult and vital. However, alongside each individual’s assessment of their own responsibility and that of the banks over their savings, such control no doubt has a knock on effect on how they treat their finances generally.