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Money saving

Consumer confidence grows

Posted 26 October 2015 by Christine Walsh

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Are you feeling more confident with your money? Research shows that overall we’re spending more and saving less. Read on to find out more.

According to the Mail Online, consumer confidence is up, and this, in turn, is encouraging people to spend more and save less.  Generally, as we feel more positive about our job security and economic prospects we tend to borrow and spend more (and save less).  Conversely when the economic news is bad and we are worried about our jobs we tend to spend less, borrow less and save more.

Every three months Deloitte (a company that provides reporting, auditing and consulting services, amongst others) asks 3,000 people how confident they are feeling about money and the economy, and then put it all together in a review called the Deloitte Consumer tracker - click on the link to learn more about their findings. The results from this quarter has shown that, overall, consumers are feeling more confident about spending and the income that they’ve got coming in.

It seems that this rise in confidence is all down to an increase in wages and the way our economy has recovered after the downturn.

Spending smarter

There are some indications from the research that people are being smarter in the way that they’re choosing to spend their cash. In September, the numbers showed that more people were buying because they were getting a good deal – like an item being on sale or special offers.

Also, there’s something of a price war going on between the big supermarkets at the moment, which has meant that spending in this sector has dropped. As the competition grows, prices fall, and consumers are reaping the benefit, with the average shopping basket being 2.1% cheaper than it was a year ago.

We’re borrowing more…

Now on the face of it, this all sounds like good news, but you should take it with a pinch of salt. People may be feeling better about money in general, which means they want to spend more, but this could be due to the fact that levels of borrowing have also increased.

As with most things, there are two sides to debt – good debt and unmanageable debt – so it’s important to keep a level head. On the one hand, consumer spending has helped the economy recover, on the other hand, taking out credit that you don’t have a plan to pay back can have negative consequences for your personal finances and the economy at large.

So, even if you’re one of the lucky people who feel secure in their job and have seen their wages increase recently, we would always advise that you borrow responsibly – in other words you have a clear plan of how you’re going to pay back anything that you borrow and that you have a good reason for borrowing in the first place. When it comes to borrowing make sure you’re thinking long term.

But saving less…

Saving is also down, with numbers hitting their lowest in five years. If you’ve found yourself with more disposable income (free income that you don’t have to spend on anything) then it’s always advisable to start saving. No matter how sure you are about your job security you never know what the future may hold and you can’t put a price on peace of mind! If you struggle to stick to your saving goals, have a look at our ideas to make it easier and more enjoyable.

So what do you think? Are you feeling more confident about money matters? Let us know on our Twitter page.

 

 

by Christine Walsh

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.