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Legal & General tackle ‘Great British Money Taboo’

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14/11/2014
Two fifths of the population (41 per cent) say money is one of their biggest stresses, yet nearly half (46 per cent) say finances are a personal matter not to be talked about, according to new research from Legal & General.

The group is launching a campaign to tackle the ‘Great British Money Taboo’, saying that people are failing to plan for their financial future, and having to cope with money worries on their own, as a result of their reluctance to talk to friends and family about their situation.

The effects of money worries include: increased pressure on family life (39 per cent); anxiety (39 per cent); bad moods (29 per cent); and sleepless nights (26 per cent). L&G says that talking finances with friends and family still isn’t the “done thing”, particularly among the older generation.

Financial issues, notably spending habits and debt, make up two of the top six taboo conversation topics between couples alongside past romantic relationships and annoying habits. Close friends are reluctant to talk about salary and savings, while children avoid talking about their debt levels with their parents.

Legal & General Assurance Society executive director and chief executive John Pollock, said: “Taking the time and having the confidence to talk about financial planning is hugely important – not just for financial reasons but for our wellbeing too. Despite this, one in five people would prefer to avoid talking about their finances and leave their financial planning to chance. We need to break this social norm and start talking about money. No matter what the situation or stage of life, achieving financial security begins with having the right conversation.”

Annie Shaw, consumer finance champion and Taboo Tent host, said: “As a nation, we simply don’t like to talk about money matters. It’s a social taboo that makes many people feel awkward. It’s not helped by the fact that financial planning can be a minefield of confusing jargon and alien terms that are difficult to understand. But talking about money doesn’t need to be a taboo. A conversation with someone who can explain the facts in plain English can go a long way to help people understand their finances and plan for the future.”

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