HOUSEHOLD FINANCES SHOW FIRST SIGNS OF RECOVERY ACCORDING TO LATEST LEGAL & GENERAL MONEYMOOD SURVEY.
13 February 2012
The latest MoneyMood Survey reveals that the number of households who say they’re “struggling” to pay bills or sinking into debt has fallen by just under a quarter of a million (244,000) at the start of the year.
The number of “surviving” households (income covers bills and debt) has gone up by almost one and a half million (1.47m) but at the expense of the homes with “Expense Cover”, the number of “stable” households who say they have some money left after paying bills each month.To see the charts for MoneyMood Survey® Expense cover 2011 versus 2012 please click on the link to the right.
Homes “short” by £100 per month on average
Commenting on these findings Mark Gregory, Legal & General Executive Director Savings said; “Perhaps the combined effect of lower inflation and the costs of utilities and food starting to fall is producing some green shoots of recovery in household finances. For those families who are struggling our latest figures indicate the average shortfall nationwide is just under £100 per month (£96). We will be monitoring this through the year to see whether their situation improves. We also looked at how much the “stable” households are able to save each month. On average those homes who have some money left over are putting away £93, only 3.4% of average household income*. But those in the South appear better off with almost double the level of saving compared to the national average.” Note* - source = ONS data December 2011.
REGIONAL DATA - How much are you short at the end of each month? To see the graph for regional data please click on the link to the right.
The percentage of homes struggling to meet bills is much higher in the W Midlands and Scotland than in the rest of the country – perhaps reflecting the impact of job losses in these regions. Although it sounds like a cliché, the survey does indicate that households in Scotland are managing to keep their shortfall in check.
The highest monthly shortfall is in London at £261 per month on average.
REGIONAL DATA - How much can you afford to save each month? To see the graph for regional data please click on the link to the right.
Across the UK the number of households saying they’re “stable” (some money left after paying bills each month) is similar from one region to the next. But the amount they save seems to show a significant drop from the W Midlands, Yorkshire and further North. With the exception of Wales there is a clear North/South divide with the South saving between 25% and 90% more than the national average and double the level of savings achieved by those in the northern regions.
REGIONAL DATA - SUMMARY
The figures vary significantly in a number of regions. The number of homes struggling to meet bills is lower across the nation but has risen in the Midlands, the South (excluding London) and Scotland – perhaps reflecting the impact of job losses in these regions. The North, Yorkshire and Humberside, East Anglia, Wales and London have seen significant falls in the number of households struggling to make ends meet.
The most saved per month = East Midlands at £177
The highest shortfall each month = London at £261
Source – Office for National statistics 2010, Legal & General Estimates, MoneyMood surveys.
|Region||“short” each month|
|How much “saved” each month £(median)||Number of households “struggling”|
|Change in 2012 vs. 20115||Based on Households per region (million)|
|Yorks and Humberside|
|E Midlands||92||177||96,000||Up 16,000||1.6|
|W Midlands||174||47||270,000||Up 90,000||1.8|
|East Anglia||25||137||60,000||Down 140,000||2.0|
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