27 September 2023

Piggy banks: How young millennials are breaking the money myths

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Grace Ormsby* reports on a new survey that debunks the myth that Australian millennials are financially irresponsible.

Photo: Fizkes

Millennials’ strong money-saving habits could foretell an “unexpected development” for the future of individual wealth in Australia, according to a survey.

Financial services company Spaceship said its research has dispelled the myth that 20-somethings are financially irresponsible, with data showing that at least 65 per cent of Australians born between 1990 and 1999 had started saving money as soon as they entered the workforce.

The survey results revealed that more than half of people in their twenties are saving at least 10–20 per cent of their income.

This contrasted with just 36.4 per cent putting away the same amount across all age groups surveyed.

A further one in five of those born between 1990 and 1999 are putting away an “admirable” 30 to 40 per cent of their income, it was reported.

This figure was also higher than the average across all age groups, which sat at 13.2 per cent.

According to the survey, one in four (23.4 per cent) of those aged 20–29 are saving for a housing deposit, while an identical proportion of those surveyed are putting money away “just in case”.

A further one in five (22.8 per cent) said they are saving for a car, with those saving for travel rounding out the top four at 17.4 per cent.

The same age category showed not nearly as many saving for weddings (4.9 per cent), for children (3.3 per cent) and school fees (2.2 per cent).

It was conceded by Spaceship that the saving habits noted in the study by those in the 20–29 age range are perhaps attributable to certain financial pressures being introduced in later life.

Despite this, for Spaceship Chairman, Andrew Moore, the new research turns common criticisms of young Australians’ spending habits on their head.

“We’ve all heard young Australians are irresponsible spenders, living from one pay cheque to the next, and spending all their money on avocado toast,” he commented.

“This research shows younger people are actually leading the charge when it comes to saving.”

“They’re focused on saving for a housing deposit or having money set aside for unexpected emergencies, showing they’re far more responsible than given credit for.”

With it being commonly understood that saving from a young age can have a profound impact on a person’s lifetime wealth, Moore said that the results may foretell an “unexpected development” for Australia’s future financial outlook.

* Grace Ormsby is a journalist with Lawyers Weekly. She tweets at @GraceOrmsby.

This article first appeared at www.nestegg.com.au.

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