Rising toll of money worries on mental health
Online saving and investment service Moola found that two thirds (63%) of people in the UK worry about their finances on a monthly basis with nearly a third (31%) of people blaming money worries for their mental health problems. Money worries brought on a variety of symptoms, including migraines, palpitations and insomnia, as well as depression and panic attacks.
Wages have been rising, but for many, they haven’t kept pace with housing costs, energy bills and other household costs. These bills are the biggest source of stress for more than a third (39%) of those that took part in the survey. Credit card bills and other debts are the major source of stress for a fifth (21%) of people aged 25-34, while those over 45 are most worried by their prospective or current retirement income.
Employers should take note that 3.1 million people in the UK have taken a day off work due to financial stress, suggesting financial anxiety is having an impact on productivity. Moola found just 19% have sought advice about their finances; with the majority (61%) turning to a money advice charity. Others sought help from partners and parents.
Gemma Godfrey, founder and CEO of Moola, said: “With current levels of financial stress and anxiety at fever pitch across the UK, it’s more important than ever that we tackle the ultimate taboo – talking about our money. The good news is that with the rise of the internet and smartphones, we now have better access than ever to tips and tools to be savvier with our finances.
“Support from family or friends can make a massive difference for those struggling every month, but financial education can be the key to offering hope for the future.
“Employers also have a crucial role to play, however. Financial wellbeing is critical to people’s overall health and motivation. Therefore, UK employers have an opportunity to better support their staff. A less anxious workforce is, after all, a more productive one, so everybody stands to gain from improving financial wellbeing.”