IMC Krems identifies generational differences in dealing with money

July 28, 2023

Student study “Between Consumption and Saving – Our Dealings with Money in a Generation Comparison”.

The results of the student study “Between Consuming and Saving – Our Dealings with Money in a Generation Comparison” show how different generations think about money in general, dealing with money and financial education.

A current student study at IMC Krems shows how different generations think about money in general, dealing with money and financial education.

As part of the Market Research course, students in the Business Management degree programme conducted a survey in the summer semester. The result is the study “Between Consumption and Saving – Our Handling of Money in a Generation Comparison”. Despite the past crises, the study shows that many respondents consider their personal financial situation to be consistently positive. A total of 85 % of the participants assess their current financial situation as very positive or rather positive. Especially Generation X (born 1965-1979) rated their situation as very positive with 39 %. The outlook for the future is also optimistic, with only 7% of Generation X and 5% of baby boomers (born 1946-1964) expecting their financial situation to deteriorate significantly in the next three years. In Generations Y (born 1980-1993) and Z (born 1994-2010), no one expects the situation to worsen.

Financial worries and little financial literacy

However, there are definitely financial worries in all generations. Almost half of the respondents agree with the statement that many people in their generation currently have financial worries. Especially among generations Y and Z, this share is significantly higher than in comparison with generations X and baby boomers. The study also shows clear deficits in financial education in schools. 48 % of the respondents state that they did not learn enough about the topic of finance in school. Only 9 out of a total of 212 respondents rate their school education as “very good”. The majority assess their current financial knowledge as “satisfactory”. The most important sources of information on financial knowledge were, above all, internet research and personal advice from family, friends or acquaintances.

Caution with spending

The majority of respondents are careful with their money. Only 13% are very spontaneous when it comes to spending. The majority of 61% consider spending carefully, but are willing to indulge themselves once in a while. More than two-thirds of those surveyed would not immediately spend a gift of 10,000 euros, but would rather invest it. Expenditure on everyday areas such as food or housing comes easiest to the respondents, but hobbies and holidays also have a high priority. Furthermore, it is evident that generations Y and Z are somewhat looser with money than generations X and baby boomers.

When it comes to incurring debt and lending money, respondents are on the whole rather cautious. Although 71% of respondents use a credit card, only 6% regularly overdraw their account. Lending money, especially to one’s own family or friends, is perceived as very unpleasant, although only a few have already had bad experiences with it.

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