Are you stashing secret cash under the mattress?

blue pigRemember when the base rate being 0.5% was news? As it happens, the Bank of England has again held rates at 0.5 per cent- now for the 81st month in a row. We all know that this means continuing dire returns for savers, which means that you might just as well stash it under the mattress.

According to the Bank of England, the average interest rate on instant access accounts – which is the most popular type of savings account- is just 0.39 per cent. Applied to the average amount of savings held of £8,500, that generates a whopping £33 interest a year. Hardly worth shouting about.

In fact, although the base rate is 0.5%, new research from Charter Savings Bank, conducted in conjunction with YouGov, has found that more than an eighth (13%) of UK adults with savings are earning below that rate on their primary savings account. As a result, and barely beating the mattress, more people seems to be turning to alternative arrangements, with an estimated 174,000 UK adults keeping their savings in an unsecured place, such as under real mattresses or in shoe boxes. But mattressing is not to be sniffed at- these are some wealthy squirrels- the Bank of England recently estimated that the UK homes have £3billion of cash stashed away.

But secret mattress stashes are not the only way in which people hide their cash. Prudential do an annual survey of the co-habiting over 40s, and their research suggests that one in 10 people over 40 has a secret stash that their partner knows nothing about. And we’re not talking spare change either, the average value of these secret savings is £30,300.

Of course, there is a flipside and in fact more people confessed to having secret debts that they’re hiding from their partner. Although the numbers are higher, at one in seven, the average amount of secret debt is a slightly more manageable £8,000.

The survey also found that one in eight (12 per cent) don’t tell their partner how much they earn. Of those who keep some or all of their earnings secret, more than a quarter (27 per cent) do so to maintain their independence, while an optimistic 23 per cent hide their earnings to maintain their financial security in case of a break up.  One in 10 (nine per cent), however, claim they keep their earnings private so they can treat their partner from the secret cash. Mmmm-hmm?

So are you a secret squirrel? Do you keep your secret earnings hidden from your partner under your bed?

1 comment

  • Pedant
    1 in 10 is 9%.... really? 1 in 11 is ~9%/1 in 10 is 10%

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