A quarter of New Zealanders would burn through their savings within a month if their main source of income was lost, a MasterCard survey suggests

A quarter of New Zealanders would burn through their savings within a month if their main source of income was lost, a MasterCard survey suggests

A quarter of New Zealanders have such meagre savings they'd be gone within a month if their main source of income dried up, according to a MasterCard survey.

MasterCard says that although New Zealand's savings culture is improving, with almost 9 in 10 people, or 89%, intending to save more or a similar amount in the coming six months as they did in the previous six months, just 26% of survey respondents believe their savings wouldn't last a month if their main source of income disappeared.

“New Zealanders have always been savvy money managers but it is surprising that, even in a post-recessionary environment, a quarter of Kiwis don’t think their savings would even see them through the month if their income stream dried up,” said Albert Naffah, MasterCard's New Zealand country manager.

MasterCard said its survey showed that on average New Zealanders could last for four months on savings if their main source of income dried up.

“Across the Asia-Pacific region, Kiwis had a lower ranking in terms of the number of months that their savings would last - well below the regional five month average," said Naffah.

In terms of the next six months, 46% of respondents to MasterCard's survey plan to save more than 10% of their income. Naffah suggested this could mainly be attributed to KiwiSaver, and a rising awareness of the importance of saving.

"Kiwis are also taking a more positive outlook when it comes to their reasons for saving, with fewer now putting money aside for precautionary measures (46%). Instead, the key reasons for saving include retirement (44%) in top spot, buying or renovating (33%), international travel (31%), or to fund investments (28%)," said Naffah.

"But while retirement was the top priority for savers, less than a third (31%) of Kiwis have calculated the amount they will need to retire - ranking New Zealand 11th in the Asia-Pacific. However even without this forward planning, Kiwis are still expecting to retire at an average age of 65, if they have sufficient financial support. This is possibly due to KiwiSaver helping Kiwis to put aside part of their earnings now, rather than having to consciously save for their retirement.”

A large majority of those surveyed, 94%, believe they have a good understanding of how to budget day-to-day finances, 79% said they were good at tracking their spending,, and 79% also said they were good at keeping up with bills. A third of respondents, 33%, admitted to having problems setting money aside for big purchases.

Meanwhile, 22% of respondents said they were using mobile banking to manage their money, with 15% considering doing this in the future. MasterCard said this was up from 10% a year ago, with the strongest increase in adoption coming from females, up from 9% to 19%, and in the 18 to 24 year age bracket, from 15% to 27%, and among 45 to 64 year-olds, up from 6% to 15%.

"With banks investing heavily in mobile money applications and more-and-more Kiwis making use of these tools, the ability to budget and monitor spending whilst on-the-go should provide a useful tool to increase and aid the financial literacy of New Zealanders,” Naffah suggested.

The MasterCard survey was conducted online with 500 New Zealanders, aged between 18 and 64,  interviewed.

Other Asia-Pacific countries surveyed were Australia, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Bangladesh, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, India, and Myanmar.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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No comments, possibly the readers here don't see the personal relevance. I wonder if most  people here(being property investors) expect they could release equity from a investment property within four months so no worries...

Another day .. another survey .. more useless information .. you have Gabriel Makhlouf rubbing his crystal ball predicting numbers 40 years out .. you have Graeme "the wheelman" Wheeler publishing incomprehensible housing loan numbers on a weekly basis .. and publishing meaningless inflation numbers .. to what purpose? .. entertain the peasants? .. divert their attention? .. look as though they are doing something meaningful .. look as though they know what they are doing?
See the meaningless RBNZ "housing loan" data and paper shuffling
Just a week ago, here on Interest.co.nz, on the housing front, it was said
Given the track record of the lever-pullers, compiling a database is pie-in-the-sky. A meaningful exercise would be a "university faculty project" with students armed with questionaires (plus authorisation) to conduct and compile "exit interviews" and "entry interviews" with every buyer and every seller for every property transaction for a period of say 6 months.
That would be a survey .. Find out what is really going on

Find out what is really going on
Savers are doomed to extinction when costs hidden by public debt extensions demand to be serviced.
The total operating deficit (when operating spending exceeds operating income) worsened to $0.7 billion in the year ended June 2012 (from $0.6 billion in 2011). This is the largest operating deficit for local authorities since 1993, when we first recorded figures. Before June 2008, local authorities had successive operating surpluses (when operating income exceeded spending).
Auckland Transport had the largest operating deficit ($217 million), followed by Auckland Council ($114 million) and Christchurch City Council ($108 million). Read more, if not graph on page 5 of 16 in the PDF encapsulates the reality.

painful isn't it
In modern day Brazil they use Thalidomide as a medical treatment for leprosy, an extremely painful ailment. The packaging of the tablets is clearly labelled with warnings on the packet. Any female taking the medication is instructed that they MUST also take 2 forms of contraception for the duration they are being treated.

Well, inevitably Brazil is experiencing an upsurge in Thalidomde babies. The only way they found out why it was happening was by "interviewing" face-to-face every mother producing a thalidomide child.

Apparently in Brazil it is common for people to "share" their medication. One lady popped some of her husbands pills not knowing what they were. And that's how they discovered what was going on.

What happens if they share their husbands as well?

If these people lose their income will this be the time that house prices finally collapse?

highly doubtful that "these" people are the high-rollers at the property-casino-table

How many Kiwi's have income protection insurance that would kick in before their savings were blown?
Assuming of course they could claim on their IP insurance.

Cripes once the property insurers are done with us little disposal income will be available for further expenditure on protecting against inevitably uninsurable events.

you are being very optimistic Gareth. 20% - 40% of the population would last 1 week! 

I do sometimes wonder what planet some of your commentators and writers are on.  Kane02 is correct.  Most New Zealanders live from payday to payday.  They are in debt up to their eyeballs and there is nothing over ever.  I am a volonteer for a budget service and I see it all the time.  But the people I see are the ones that are brave enough to come for help. The others live lives of quiet desperation.

It is likely that you, Kane, and the writer, are all correct, with the different interpretations down to statistics. The headline says a quarter of NZers wouldn't last a month, and that is consistent with your view. The article uses "average" as a key measure, where median, or deciles may be better. If Bill Gates were to move to NZ with his $50 billion, it would likely move the average savings up a month or two, but it wouldn't change everyone else's savings.

How did NZ compare on the survey to the other countries mentioned , and to the two Bangladeshs , Gareth ? .......... they really gotta a population problem when you havta mention them twice to fit them all in ... we're ahead of them , surely ..... yessssssssss ?
...... nice to see we're lumped in with similar third world economies such as the Philippines , plus Me and Ma ...
What's the result for the underarmers , Australia ? .... 3 days , 4 ???

Salutations Mon Ami.....it has been a tad on the serious side here for the past wee while . The editor may now examine the content for it's quality and relevance to topic.
 My abscence has been due to a lack of creative thought on things financial.....I think I have writers block, my shrink says it's  just .............a complete lack of talent. Bastard .
 So good to see you  drop in, if only  to bait some of the badgers.
 Stay well ..talk soon I hope ...off again to the mid east ....been a funny year....yes indeed it has. 

Hello Count : Your " shrink " is to be recommended , mine wants to put alot of hot sand inside the Gummy cranium ..... mind you , it could be an improvement ....
.... I've been away awhile too , I've been happy ! ... and rather than burst a bubble of joy & bonhomie , stayed away from Captain Calamity's Gloomster Zone until it passed ....
  Pip pip old bean ...

hI Gummy. Apparently the Aussies could last 5 months on average.