LONDON, December 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
As Britain's place in Europe hangs in the balance, more than one in two Britons (55%) finish 2011 concerned about the outlook for the British economy. On a more immediate level full-time workers have spent the year stressed about job security, the retired have worried about surviving on a declining monthly income and students have been concerned about rising education costs.
2011 has been a year of extremes - stock market volatility, riots, rising unemployment, student protests and falling house prices. As the year-end approaches, financial planning business rplan.co.uk polled more than 2,000 adults to ask them what their top causes of concern had been looking back on 2011.
- The outlook for the British economy topped the poll, a key concern for 55% of adults. This was most prevalent among older people rising to 70% of over 55 year olds and regionally in the East Midlands and Scotland (both 46%).
- The second biggest cause of concern during 2011 was declining monthly disposable income. This was equally strongly felt by those in full-time work and amongst the retired (both 40%) and was highest for families with three or more children (54%). Regionally, this concern was most strongly felt in Yorkshire (46%) and least in London (31%).
- After household income, the third most prevalent concern was the state of the world economy, a top concern for the retired (55%).
- Job security came fourth, a major concern for almost one in five people (19%). This rose to 30% of full time-workers and was most strongly felt in London (24%).
- Not having a pension or enough savings (15%) proved to be a bigger issue than concern over the breakdown of community spirit (14%), and fears of crime and violence (13%), which ranked, 6th and 7th respectively. The lack of long-term savings was a particular issue for women (18%), part time workers (19%) and people in the North East (21%).
- Having a bad work-life balance (12%) and not knowing how to cope with debts (12%) ranked 8th and 9th.
- Education costs and safety on the roads being a major 2011 concern for around one in 12 people (8% respectively).
Andrew Harris, Director at rplan.co.uk commented: "It's been a really tough year for most people. What is noteworthy from our survey is that money worries have, in some shape or form, been a dominant worry for most people over the last year, whether this takes the form of living on a declining level of income or coping with debts. The amount of people worried about not having a pension or savings in place reflects a society that is becoming increasingly concerned about needing to have a plan B in place and we would expect this to figure prominently among people's resolutions for the New Year."