Bank of Ireland Research Reveals Ireland Has Become a Nation of “Accidental” Savers
“Invested” Webinar Series Aims to Grow Knowledge of Investing
Recent research carried out by Bank of Ireland reveals that many people have become “accidental” savers during the COVID-19 crisis, and plan to continue saving once Covid is over or subsides. But with people wanting to make their money work harder for them in what is currently a low interest rate environment, how many are considering investing as part of their future financial planning?
Knowledge of investments is low at present, with only 23% claiming they have enough know-how in this space to make the right decisions. 86% of respondents cited a fear of losing their money as the main reason for steering clear, but to combat this Bank of Ireland is now putting decades of investment expertise to good use in rolling out its “Invested” webinar series to enhance people’s knowledge and understanding of investing.
Almost two-thirds of survey respondents claimed to have never received any investment advice, and 41% claimed that despite the rise in savings they still didn’t feel they had enough money to start investing. However tailored and sustainable investment plans can begin from as little as €100 a month, becoming a more attractive option for some people currently with increased savings and earning very little from their deposit accounts.
The research shows that many are keen to use their COVID savings to take a long awaited holiday, or are looking to make a “big-ticket” purchase when the shops re-open. Findings of the national survey also revealed that:
- 44% of respondents managed to save more in the last year than prior to the pandemic
- The average amount saved was €5,600
- Only 23% of people claim to have sufficient knowledge of markets and investment options
- 71% said they will continue to save once the pandemic ends or even subsides
The vast majority of people are planning for the future, with short-term spending aims including home renovations (57%), which have doubled as offices for a huge amount of the population since March 2020. 48% of those surveyed are still keen on travelling once the restrictions ease, looking to go on holiday once it is safe to do so.
Saving has become a way of life for many throughout the pandemic, with spending options severely restricted in the past 12 months. Half of those surveyed (50%) now want to build up a rainy day fund for the future (making a solid investment plan more appealing), and with Central Bank data showing savings skyrocketing across sections of society, it is perhaps not surprising that only 4% of those who took part in the survey revealed that they plan on blowing all they’ve saved in one go.
Bernard Walsh, Head of Investments and Pensions at Bank of Ireland added: “We can see from this research that people need to become more comfortable investing their money, and Bank of Ireland wants to help close this knowledge gap. We have a responsibility as trusted investment advisers to guide people through the process, and with 58% of survey respondents stating they would like to learn more about this area online, our aim is to equip them with the knowledge to make the right decision. We don’t want people missing out on growth of their hard-earned money through lack of knowledge of the alternatives to deposits.
“In a low interest rate environment investments become more appealing, which is why we have produced a dedicated eBook to help people learn about the basics of investing. Our forthcoming “Invested” webinar series starting on 6 May is also designed to educate potential investors of all knowledge levels and provide them with expert advice, insights and tips. Whilst the pandemic has cut people’s spending opportunities, it has opened up investment possibilities, and these webinars will appeal to both those looking to make an initial investment as well as experienced investors.”
“The ongoing vaccine rollout gives people hope that they can start living their lives again soon. However, our research shows us that good savings habits have been established during the lockdown periods, and it’s important that people don’t overlook the role that investing can play in making their money work for them. Bank of Ireland is committed to helping people understand their finances better and enable them to put a suitable plan in place to allow them enjoy a better financial future.”
Notes to editors:
Information about the Bank of Ireland “Invested” webinar series, as well as access to a downloadable eBook can be found at bankofireland.com/invested
Options to arrange a meeting with a qualified financial advisor, can be found at bankofireland.com/exploreinvesting.