A new strategy has been launched in order to improve the UK’s financial capability as new research has revealed that 40% of adults cannot control their finances and 20% cannot read a bank statement.
Santander is also working to change financial capability in the UK with the Social Market Foundation think tank.
The UK Financial Capability Board published a ten year strategy last week in partnership with The Money Advice Service so that people are able to manage money better and in turn, deal with financial issues.
The research compiled after consulting 5,000 people from large organisations exposed problems, such as how 21 million do not have an extra £500 to cover unexpected bills, 19 million do not budget and 8 million are dealing with debt.
The board are encouraging a “save for tomorrow” attitude and the new strategy focuses on a collective impact and cross-sector coordination rather than isolated interventions. Alongside this, resources will be tried and tested to determine what works to deliver evidence-based interventions.
Chairman of the Financial Capability Board, Andy Briscoe, said that for many people, money is a constant source of worry and stress. “This is a problem first and foremost for the individuals concerned and for their families, but it also has wider implication for society and the economy. The stubbornly low levels of financial capability in the UK can no longer be tolerated,” Briscoe highlighted.
Angela Wakelin, Director of Risk and Operations at Santander commented on the launch of the strategy and said that a key step to resolving problems is to take a coordinated approach to help people manage their money.
“Developing a UK-wide evidence based strategy to tackle this problem is now a key priority. On an individual level improved financial capability is integral to building a person’s financial resilience and wellbeing. On a wider level building a more capable and confident financial UK population is likely to result in a more engaged customer base,” Wakelin said.
“Today we are calling for a fully collaborative approach to ensure we achieve the goals set out in the Strategy over the next decade,” Briscoe added.
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