Australia Is Now A Nation Of Savers

A recent study by ING Direct has found that Australians are saving a lot this year. Today the average Australian household has about $15,000 cash saved up. This has nearly tripled from the average rate of $5,155 in March 2011.

Australians Are Saving More!

Who Has All This Cash?

Apparently, according to the study, the Baby Boomers (50-64) are the richest of all of us, with their average savings equalling $17,744, followed by Gen Y (18-34) with an average of $14,372, with last place going to the Gen X'rs (35-49) their average being only $8,060.

Why the big difference?

Baby Boomers have all their super available and most have their houses paid off, thus leaving them more opportunity to save.

Gen Y'rs are starting out their professional lives, and a lot of them are still living at home. Their high incomes plus low expenses means they have plenty of disposable income available, and thus a good opportunity to save more.

Then we get to the Gen X'rs, most are raising a family, and paying off a mortgage, thus have little, if any, opportunity to save extra cash.

Why Did We Increase Savings?

It'd make sense that if interest rates were rising more people would be willing to save and get a bigger return on their money. But no that's not the case, as everyone knows, interest rates have been falling. The cash rate in March 2011 was 4.75%, now it's at 2.5%.

Maybe people are earning a lot more now? Well incomes have risen a little but nothing compared to the huge jump in savings. The average weekly income in May 2011 was $1,020.10, now it's at $1,105.20, that's a rise of just under $100.

One other possible reason could be that Australians have recently been getting on top of their debt. Some figures found by the same study by ING Direct suggest this is the case.

When it comes to mortgages, half of all mortgage holders stated that they have been making payments as they fall due, while only 4% are falling behind. They also found that 43% of mortgage holders are ahead on their loan payments.

The rate of personal loans are also lower, now only 1 in 5 Australians have personal loans.

The average household now only has 1.7 credit or store cards, while 15% of us don't use credit cards at all.

Which State Is The Savings Capital?

The average Victorian household leads the list, having saved up an amount of $24,971, followed by Western Australia with $19,442, New South Wales comes in third with $15,907.

Queensland is left behind with households only saving up an average of $8,043, still not as low as the big spenders in South Australia who's average household only has $7,988 saved up.

How Do Our Savings Compare To The Rest Of The World?

New Zealand has a savings rate of only 0.1% of their disposable incomes, while Australians are saving 10.2% of their disposable incomes.

We also beat out the U.K who are saving only 6.1% of their disposable incomes.

The U.S.A don't fare too well either, only saving 2.4% of their disposable incomes.

The countries that save the most are:

  • 1. France - 15.6%
  • 2. Switzerland - 13.9%
  • 3. Portugal - 12.8%
  • 4. Sweden - 12.4%
  • 5. Germany - 10.3%
  • 6. Australia - 10.2%
  • 7. Belgium - 9.9%
  • 8. Czech Republic - 9.4%
  • 9. Norway - 9.3%
  • 10. Spain - 8.6%

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