CBA: Half of the nation’s millennials don’t have a savings plan.

A new study from Commonwealth Bank showed that one in two millennials wish they could have more open discussions about money, and even more want to know how to get ahead financially.  

The research - which looked at the attitudes and habits of millennials towards their finances - found that 61 percent of millennials don’t have a regular savings plan. However, the study found that a solid 54 percent were keen to discuss strategies for getting ahead financially. In contrast, 31 percent don’t feel comfortable talking about money. 

The CBA research also showed that while a third of millennials try to put money into savings whenever they can, one in ten live from payday to payday. 

When it comes to the financial achievements that make millennials feel most ‘adult’, the most important is buying a house (58 percent), even though less than a third (28 percent) have done so to date, according to CBA. Other achievements include having a full-time job (37 percent) moving in with their partner or getting married (33 percent) and moving out of their parent's house (29 percent), 

Smaller, day-to-day wins that feel more achievable include having a full fridge of groceries (22 percent), and paying for their streaming services (12 percent).  

Yet that is not to say millennials have given up on their bigger financial ambitions, with more than half (58 percent) saying they intend to buy a house within the next five years. 

Need more tools 

Kate Crous, CBA’s executive manager of everyday banking. said Australians in this age group recognise the importance of having a savings plan but feel they need more strategies and tools to help them save better, with only 39 percent having a savings plan that they work to each time they get paid.  

“We recognise many young Australians want to be more in control of their spending so they can start focusing on longer term goals, whether that’s saving for a rainy day or buying a home,” she said. 

“We know that one in four millennials favour digital banking for transparency of their finances, and through our smart features in the CommBank app, we’re able to deliver even more meaningful ways for customers to engage with their money and plan ahead. 

“For example, Bill Sense helps predict upcoming bills so you can see how much you may need for bills each month on one simple timeline, and Goal Tracker allows customers to set a savings goal, broken down into weekly targets so it feels less overwhelming or completely out of reach.” 

 More control over finances  

RFi Group's research director for Australia and New Zealand Kate Wilson, said RFi data also supports this view of younger customers savings sentiment.  

“Our data suggests that younger savers have big long-term goals, like a house deposit, and if anything, the pandemic has re-focused younger savers on these types of goals over shorter term goals like travel.  

“Younger savers definitely want more control over their finances, in our data they are starting to pro-actively state that they want better personal finance management functionality in their banking app and also highly value spending and savings tools that would help them to manage their finances.” 

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