Two recent surveys suggest Brits are spending rather than saving, with men likely to spend more on themselves than women. Are we ignoring the current dire economic situation just to “eat, drink and be merry”?
A new survey from Standard Life shows that people are currently spending much more on their credit cards each month than they are managing to put away into savings and Isa accounts. UK adults are hitting their credit cards to the tune of £317 each month, while only building up their savings by £140.
In another survey, Capital One reports that men are spending £72.20 each month on gifts for themselves, compared with the £54.20 that women set aside for treats. This might be partially explained by the fact that men still tend to earn more. Nevertheless, isn’t this just plain greedy?
Credit card madness
Standard Life’s findings contradict the current belief that people are paying off their debts and trying to boost their savings. Though it could be that Brits are using their credit cards to pay regular bills as they struggle with their finances.
Retail figures seem to suggest that shoppers aren’t going mad with their plastic yet. But if you do have any spare cash at the end of the month, you should address any debt first, use your Isa allowance and then put money into savings accounts.
However, this would be the sensible option and none of us are sensible when it comes to dealing with our cash, me included.
Men are greedy
The fact that men are spending more on themselves will come as no surprise to many. Some men, myself included, will always find new ‘toys for boys’ to waste our cash on. My wife, on the other hand, is more likely to buy stuff that benefits the whole family.
Reliance on your credit card is a dangerous ploy and harks back to the middle of the last decade when people had a laissez faire attitude to borrowing and credit, just before the economy bombed.
So, two key questions emerge from these surveys:
- Is it sensible, given the ongoing economic gloom, that we are spending more on our credit cards at the moment than we are managing to save?
- And are men more selfish than women when it comes to spending on themselves?