The research is found within the second annual UK Consumer Trends report that tracks sentiment and behaviours ahead of the new year. Key findings include:

A majority of Brits are watching their finances in 2022: 

·     The pandemic, mixed with wider economic issues and the rising cost of living, appears to have had an effect on Brits’ relationship with money. The latest Attest research finds that consumers are most likely to say they’re spending ‘fairly cautiously’ (31%), while 11% are spending ‘very cautiously’ - that’s 42% of people who are sticking to a strict budget. But frugalness doesn’t apply to everyone; over a quarter of consumers (28%) are spending ‘freely’.

·      There are also generational differences in how younger people and older people are spending. Gen Z are more than three times as likely as Boomers to say they’re spending ‘very freely’ (11% versus 3%) and twice as likely to describe themselves as spending as ‘freely’ (29% versus 14%).

The UK is a nation of savers

·        With many Brits planning to count their pennies in 2022, 86% say they are putting cash aside each month for a rainy day, although not necessarily that much of it. Of Britain’s savers, the single largest percentage of people (14%) save between £26- £50 per month, but one in ten (10%) save more than £250 each month. 

·      By contrast, previous Attest research from 2019 revealed that 22% of Brits reported having no savings. This new research highlights that just 14% of consumers are not saving on a monthly basis, indicating that people are more likely to be putting money aside post-COVID. 

·        Boomers are the group most likely to not save at all; 21% versus 17% of Gen X, 10% of Millennials and 6% of Gen Z. So it appears that even though younger people are spending more freely than their older counterparts, they’re also saving more. 

What people want to spend their money on:

·        Following the busy and often expensive Christmas season, Brits are saving for vacations (32%), with Boomers especially setting their hearts on a trip (34%). 

·      Another sector that looks set to benefit is home improvements; just under 20% of Brits are saving up to make updates to their homes. This sees the continuation of the DIY trend sparked by 2020’s stay-at-home orders.

·        In terms of big-ticket items, people are as likely to be saving for a mortgage deposit as a new vehicle (both at 12%). 

Jeremy King, CEO and Founder of Attest, said: “As shown by the Attest data, many consumers are being extra cautious with their finances as we enter this new year. The ongoing pandemic, mixed with an uncertain economic outlook seems to have driven people to focus on building up a rainy day fund to protect themselves from any unexpected events in 2022.”