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Money Worries Maxing Out Britain's Stress Levels

CHESTER, England, January 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

  • Money worries are the biggest causes of stress for consumers
  • 77 per cent say their money stresses will increase next year
  • 22 per cent expect Christmas to push them either into debt or further into debt
  • Taking control of your finances in the New Year is the key to reducing financial stress

Money worries are the biggest cause of concern for British consumers, with 16.8 million feeling stressed out by their finances every single day, according to research from MoneySupermarket.*

Research by the UK's number one comparison site revealed a third of UK adults (34 per cent) feel stressed on a daily basis as a result of their financial situation - an increase of four per cent on 2011. Seventeen per cent say it is their future financial situation which is the main cause of the stress, and a further seventeen per cent say it is their current financial situation. This is followed by fourteen per cent who state they are most stressed out by their health, and a further thirteen per cent by their job.

Kevin Mountford, Head of Banking at MoneySupermarket,  said: "As was the case last year, anxiety about money is the top cause of stress for many adults. This is unsurprising given the difficult economic environment and the rising cost of living, which has really impacted hard-pressed households. Unfortunately, I think we can expect next year's outlook to be just as tough as changes to benefits, taxation and further austerity measures take their toll. If you are in a position where you are worrying about money, you can take positive action to relieve this- there are ways to take control of your finances and reduce the worry they can cause. Understanding and controlling your household budgeting better and avoid unnecessary overspending can help alleviate some of the anxiety, even if times remain tough."

The research also reveals that 77 per cent of those who feel stressed by their finances, believe this stress will only increase next year. A huge 60 per cent blame the rising cost of living as a key factor in making their stress worse, with a further eight per cent worried about their mortgage repayments, and six per cent are concerned by squeezes to their benefits in 2013. Many also believe Christmas will add a further financial strain, with a fifth (22 per cent) stating that it will either push them into debt or further into debt.

Taking your finances by the horns…

Overall, half of Brits (50 per cent) think they could save money by taking better care of their finances, but 16 per cent of these don't know how they could save more money. One in six (15 per cent) simply can't be bothered spending the time to research the best options, and 10 per cent blame lack of time as a factor stopping them taking control and sorting out their finances. A further nine per cent do not understand their finances or know what the best options are for their needs. When asked how long it took before they got bored or frustrated with their finances, 25 per cent said it was within the first twenty minutes.

Kevin Mountford, continued: "Taking time out to review your finances and switching to a better product for your needs really could make all the difference and provide a welcome boost to your finances in the New Year. And it's really much simpler and quicker than you think.

"For those who are worried about money, it is vital to tackle the issue head on. Although apathy, lack of time and knowledge are some of the reasons for not taking control of the situation, it really is worthwhile sitting down and seeing where savings can be made, cut out any unnecessary expenditure and free up cash which can be used elsewhere.  Using a comparison site such as MoneySupermarket to research and shop around to help switch to a better value deal can make significant savings, without a change of lifestyle. By checking what deal you are currently being offered and comparing it to other products, it can help put some money back into your pocket, giving you a head start for the New Year. If you are in a position where you don't know where to turn, then seek help from one of the free debt advice charities, who may be able to help."

Notes to editors:

*Opinium Research carried out an online poll of 2,048 British adults from 16th to 19th November 2012

Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria, based on 49,969,000 UK adults.

*16.8 million people feel stressed about finances every day

Based on adult population of UK being 49.9 million - sourced from ONS for 2012 (49,969,000 x 33.8% being stressed about current or future financial situation = 16,889,522) 16.8 Million

MoneySupermarket.com compares (at 29th November 2012)

  • 130 car insurance brands and 99 home insurance brands
  • 9 broadband providers and 20 energy providers   
  • 30 unsecured loan and 5 secured loan providers
  • 62 mortgage lenders and 27 credit card providers
  • 63 savings providers and 38 current account providers.
  • Over 920,000 mobile phone deals

Our customers

We help our customers to save money on all of their household bills by providing a free, easy to use online service so they can compare a wide range of products in one place and find the product most suited to their needs. Our size means we are able to offer our customers exclusive, market-leading deals, including some they can't even get direct from providers.

Our providers

By having considerable volumes of informed customers actively looking for products and ready to purchase, we offer our providers an efficient and cost effective customer acquisition solution across all of our channels. This enables our providers to target their marketing spend in an effective and completely measurable way.

Our revenue comes predominantly from fees paid to us by product providers when a customer clicks through to their website and actually applies for or purchases a product. It is a success based marketing fee.

Our customer commitment

  • We make it easy to find the brands you expect to see
  • We strive to ensure a product cannot be found cheaper by going direct
  • We let you remain in control of your personal data
  • We are independent and impartial
  • We make it easy to switch and save
  • We strive to always show the most competitive product available

For further information contact:
Paul Lawler
MoneySupermarket.com
+44(0)787-237-9545 / +44(0)1244-370-318
Paul.lawler@moneysupermarket.com

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