Today’s 20-30 year olds are not the ‘lost generation’ they are widely thought to be but instead play an active and considered part in planning their financial future, according to a survey by communications consultancy MRM.
The survey of 137, conducted in January 2010, shows that younger adults have begun to recognise the need to save earlier, prioritise debt repayments and give more thought to planning their financial future; with 80% in possession of a savings account, 29% paying into a pension and 35% describing paying off debt as their ‘number one financial priority’. Thirty two per cent feel ‘in control of their money and like to plan ahead’, while the vast majority (89%) believe you should have begun to plan your financial future by 30.
While this is encouraging, the findings also demonstrated a deep mistrust of financial services, with half of those questioned (50%) actively becoming more vigilant about their personal finances because of the credit crunch. Over half (52%) describe family and friends as their biggest source of financial advice, with almost two thirds (63%) placing financial advisers at the bottom of the list when it comes to seeking financial advice.
Author of the report Sarah O’ Connell commented: “While our findings indicate that this demographic is savvy when it comes to money there is also a deep mistrust of the financial sector which needs to be addressed if we are to build on what look to be extremely promising foundations for financial ‘literacy’ and prudence.
“Much media ‘noise’ has been made about putting a tag on other social groups in similar age brackets – leading to the ‘NEETs’, the ‘Boomerang’ generation’, even the ‘Yuckies’, but we have heard relatively little about this group, a young ‘middling’ generation – not students nor fresh graduates, but young adults in their first / second job, and thus at a crucial stage in laying good foundations for their financial future.
“The next step will be to find out how financial providers can reach out to younger people to bridge the gap between young people’s attitudes towards their personal financial planning and their actions to highlight what can and should be done to secure a healthy financial future.”