Despite small attempts to save, Britons still big spenders

By Cara Henis

Britons still big spendersWhen it comes to saving money, Britons think they are most likely to find the seeds of success in their gardens, according to a survey commissioned by ING Direct and conducted by TNS, a global market research group.

Out of eight other countries surveyed, Britons topped the list when it comes to growing their own fruit and vegetable gardens as a way to cut grocery costs, reported the ING survey released in July 2009. Twenty-two percent of Britons are opting to go homegrown.

Despite making small attempts to save, the report also revealed that Britons as less likely to put off major purchases due to the recession. Britons are more comfortable than people in other countries when it comes to spending their money to buy a car, for example. And only 18 percent of respondents said that they have postponed purchasing a car compared to 28 percent of Americans and 37 percent of Italians.

Buying a home is another financial decision that Britons are still confident about making. Only 9 percent put off the purchase compared to 14 percent of Australians and Italians.

In spite of these hefty purchases, Britons are still much more optimistic that retirement will still occur on time. Only 27 percent of Britons foresee needing to delay their retirement. Forty-one percent of Australians think their retirement will be delayed by at least five years. Americans aren't cheerful about their retirement prospects either; 40 percent think they will be retiring later in life.

In addition to longer retirements, Britons may be enjoying longer relationships than their counterparts in other countries.  A substantially lower percentage of Britons have experienced romantic relationships that are strained or stressed due to the recession. Only 17 percent of Britons have reported problems compared to 28 percent of Americans and 24 percent of Australians.

"Resilient Brits are adopting ‘get on with it' attitude to the recession, refusing to let economic conditions dictate their lives -- in contrast to many other nations," said an ING Direct press release.

Published: 5 August 2009