Number of regular savers drops in January

The proportion of people saving regularly dropped to 50pc in January from 53pc in December.

In addition, consumers also felt more dissatisfied with the amount that they were saving, with half of people surveyed of the view that they were saving less than they should in January, up from 45pc in December.

When consumers were asked about their top new year financial resolution for 2018, most respondents (41pc) said they would like to save more money, with over one-fifth (23pc) aiming to spend less money, according to the Bank of Ireland/ESRI Savings and Investments Index.

Paying off debt and developing a long term plan to meet financial goals also featured among their financial new year resolutions.

“The Bank of Ireland/ESRI Saving and Investment Index was unmoved in January 2018. However the most striking insight was that Irish people felt they weren’t saving or investing enough, a theme also visible in the questions on retirement planning,” Tom McCabe, Bank of Ireland Investment Markets, said.

Nearly one-third of people were investing regularly in January, down slightly from December. Similar to the savings attitudes index, Irish people also felt they weren’t investing as much as they’d like in January, with 39pc feeling they didn’t invest as much as they should.

Almost two in five respondents felt it was a good time to invest now, the strongest response since the investment environment index began in October.

Meanwhile it also emerged from the January data that Irish people are growing more concerned about their level of retirement planning.

People under 50 appear more pessimistic about their financial prospects in retirement, with the index reporting that 60pc of under 50s felt financially unprepared for retirement – almost double the percentage of over 50s.

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