More employees are currently worried about their finances than their health, a survey from Neyber has revealed, with 30% naming finances as their biggest worry compared to 25% who named their physical health. This was closely followed by 24% worrying about their retirement provision – another money matter.
Other worries included maintaining a work-life balance (22%), the health of family or friends (18%) and their own mental health (14%). Further data shows that, unfortunately, these worries are not unfounded, as 50% said that they regularly have to borrow to meet their basic needs, putting increasing strain on their finances.
As a result of this borrowing, personal debt has risen by 7% since last year, now sitting at an average of £13,000. This debt may well be higher among those who are less than 30 years old, as 70% in this group said they've regularly had to borrow to be able to buy everyday necessities.
Despite the various money worries, or perhaps compounding them, further data shows that 32% have less than a month's savings set aside, which could be woefully inadequate if they were to lose their job or develop a long-term illness. What's worse, 14% have no savings whatsoever, making them vulnerable to all manner of unforeseen situations.
"Given the current economic climate – Brexit, inflation and wage stagnation – it is hardly surprising that finances are the thing most likely to keep UK employees up at night," said Heidi Allan, head of employee wellbeing at Neyber. "However, it is alarming that so few workers are taking steps to protect themselves financially. Money troubles can lead to stress and even depression, so it is crucial that we arm people and help them to become more financially savvy."
If you have found your way to Moneyfacts.co.uk, it's likely that you're already quite financially savvy. However, remember that your friends or family might not have the same level of expertise – the survey found that 30% of respondents didn't understand credit scores, with a whopping 66% not checking theirs on a regular basis.
To help those around you who may be struggling financially, you could point them to our guide on getting out of debt, our 0% purchase credit card chart, or even simply a credit check provider. And don't forget that income protection could make a big difference to those who don't have enough set aside in an emergency pot; you never know when something might happen that prevents you from working for a while.