Britons saving more, survey reveals
Britons are showing signs of saving more after figures revealed the amount of money put aside increased for the second successive quarter.
The NS&I Quarterly Savings Survey said Britons saved an average of 7.3% or £90 of their monthly income, up from £87 in July and a big improvement on the £83 seen in autumn 2010, the lowest figure since records began in 2004.
Savings levels increased when Northern Rock and Lehman Brothers collapsed in 2007 and 2008 and spiked again to £100 in spring last year.
NS&I added that more than half the population - 52% - now feel they have enough money to pay for emergencies, compared with 50% last spring.
Although women continue to put away a higher proportion of their income than men, at an average of 7.69% compared with men's 7.10%, men have saved more, with £102.54 a month compared with the £78.49 saved by women. However, the outlook is more negative with an increased number of people suspecting they will be less likely to sustain this level of saving over the next three months.
NS&I retail customer director John Prout said: "It is encouraging to see that savings levels have increased for the second quarter in succession.
"However, we know that these are at low levels and the need for people to review every aspect of their spending to see if they can build up more of a financial cushion is still ever pressing."
Meanwhile, a separate survey from the Halifax said 37% of people still had to dip into their savings in the last three months, withdrawing an average £1,186 to cover car repairs, holiday costs, overspending, and emergencies.
According to the Halifax, Londoners have the largest average savings (£22,366), ahead of Yorkshire and the Humber (£19,233) and the East Midlands (£18,795). The lowest were in the North East (£11,951), the North West (£12,179) and the East of England (£14,390)
The Halifax survey shows that savings and raidings do not correlate with income, as those earning less than £5,000 raid the most, and those earning £30,000-£49,000 raid the least.