A quarter of Australians are uncomfortable with their financial position

With the financial climate darkened by talks of mortgage stress, the falling property market, and news of banking misconduct, 25% of Australian consumers are uncomfortable with their financial position, according to the 2018 Consumer Pulse Report of financial comparison site Canstar.

However, the number is a mild improvement compared to the 33% in 2017. The report also found that 8% of consumers say that they’re very uncomfortable with their financial position, 17% are somewhat uncomfortable, 26% are neutral, 39% are somewhat comfortable, and 9% are very comfortable.

Canstar asked 2,090 Australian consumers in November 2018 for their thoughts, attitudes, and expectations on financial stability, savings and priorities, mortgage security and negotiating skills, housing affordability, and the future of banking.

Gen Y saves more
When it comes to saving for the future, Australians appear to be struggling. Only 27% save one tenth or less of their after-tax income, and 24% save nothing at all. For consumers who save nothing, 69% live pay cheque to pay cheque, while the 31% find no reason to save or just don’t want to.

Gen Y is the generation most likely to save money, with only 15% saying they save nothing from their after-tax income. On the other hand, 25% of baby boomers, and 26% of Gen Zs, and Gen Xs said they don’t regularly save. Interestingly, 61% of baby boomers in 2018, compared to 49% last year, said they’re saving.

Prioritising holidays
According to the survey, Australians will primary focus on saving for a holiday, retirement, and buying a house in 2019. Their least concern is putting money aside for a wedding.

While only 26% of the respondents said taking control of their finances is a priority in 2019, 68% of them ranked it as their top priority. Similarly, of the 42% who said that going on a holiday is a top priority, 45% rank it their top priority.