NS&I Report Reveals Future Families Founded On Fortune
on: August 14, 2009, 11:52 am
Author: National Savings and Investments
The new National Savings and Investments (NS&I) commissioned
report*, 'Families, Finance and the Future', suggests the existence
of a new institution of British life - the 'Financial Family' - a
collaborative unit of close friends and family marked by financial
interdependence. It does not simply show a steady flow of cash down the
generations, or the 'sandwich generation' arrangement observed in
recent years, but also shows flows of money and advice, up and down the
generations as well as between siblings.
The costs of living and care for the elderly are recognised as rising, and the
report suggests that the traditional family unit is shifting - yet family ties will
be stronger than ever, and people will rely much more on financial networks. By
2029, there will be more cohabiting couples, and more single-person households than
married couples living together** - so the Financial Family will be important even
after the traditional family has declined.
According to the new survey research, the majority of people felt financially
responsible for family members (54%), while 70% stated that current economic trouble
meant families needed to support each other (70%).
Young people are more engaged with the Financial Family, with 50% of 16-24s
identified as members of a Financial Family, compared to 30% of 25-34s and 20% of
35-44s. As this generation grows up, the Financial Family will become more and more
Technology will also mean that people are better equipped to share financial advice
- but will also make it more important they do so. As the amount of information that
tries to reach consumers increases, people will rely on the insights of their
financial network to process this mass of information. This network is likely to
revolve around the family as most people feel comfortable discussing financial
matters (55%) with close friends and family, or sharing financial tips and advice
Barry Clark, Associate Director at the Future Foundation said: "We feel we've
revealed a new way for people to look at British family life - and one that will
become increasingly common. When we look at several demographic trends, like the
rise of single-person households, the advance of technology and young people's
involvement in financial matters, we can expect the Financial Family to be a very
important feature in the future. The Financial Family is here to stay."
Tim Mack, Savings Spokesman at NS&I, said: "We started from an intuitive feeling
that discussing money isn't taboo any more, but the results far exceeded our
expectations. The research shows that the discussion of finances, and our
relationship with money, extends beyond the traditional family."
NS&I is one of the largest UK investments and savings organisations, offering a range of savings accounts and investments products, including
fixed rate savings bonds, fixed term
investments, Premium Bonds, savings
certificates, and ISAs to almost 27 million customers. Established in 1861.
Notes to editors
* Research carried out by Future Foundation in April 2009, with a base of 1,049
adults in the UK aged 16+ using desk research and original survey work. Sources the
British Household Panel Survey, the ONS, Eurobarometer, the Department for
Communities and Local Government, and previous surveys conducted by the Future
** Department for Communities and Local Government figures predict that by 2029,
about 40% of all households will be single-person; about 30% will be married
couples; and 15% cohabiting couples. The figures for 2009 are around 30%, 40% and
10% respectively; and for 1979, 22%, 65% and 2%.
Senior NS&I and Future Foundation spokespeople are available for interview. Case
studies and further information on the report are available by contacting the NS&I
For further information contact:
National Savings and Investments
375 Kensington High Street
020 7348 9654