Royal London survey reveals less people worrying about money

Tue Apr 16 2019

For the fourth year running, according to research commissioned by leading protection specialist Royal London, money topped the list of things Irish people are worrying about the most (39%). However, what you may find interesting is that this figure is 7% less than last year’s 46% who said that money was their biggest concern.

Joe Charles, Royal London’s Head of Proposition commented, “You probably could have guessed accurately that money ranks first as Irish people’s biggest worry. What you may not have anticipated though, is that there has been a drop in the number of people who identified money as their biggest concern of 2019 when compared with last year. This could be an indication that, buoyed by the growing economy, people are generally feeling more secure about their financial situation. In turn, this could present more opportunities for brokers to provide financial advice and solutions to meet this increased level of consumer confidence.”

Based on the annual Royal London survey of 1,000 people nationwide, after money, health was the next item people worried about the most (19%), which rose up by 4% from the previous year. 15% of people worried about their family, which has remained consistent with last year. The next biggest worry was work (13%). In life assurance terms, money, health and family are the key drivers to taking out cover and combined they are the top three worries for 73% of those surveyed. This figure rose to 75% for those aged 35-54.*

Biggest Worry 2019 2018 2017 2016
Money 39 46 37 46
Health 19 15 18 19
Family 15 15 22 14
Work 13 11 8 10
Loneliness 7 6 8 4
Relationship/ Love 5 5 6 5
Friends 2 2 1 2


Health is the focus

The nationwide Royal London survey also asked people what their biggest focus was for 2019. There was no change in ranking for the top three answers, for the fourth year in a row, health was cited as the majority of people’s main focus (36%), followed by career (26%) and travel (14%).

Biggest Focus 2019 2018 2017 2016
Health 36 32 37 40
Career 26 23 26 22
Travel 14 17 13 13
Property 10 9 8 8
Family 9 13 10 12
Love 5 6 6 6


Joe said, “Overall health is a big focus for everyone surveyed. It is the top focus for 35-54 year olds and the 55 and overs, while it is the second most important focus for 18-34 year olds. Last year, the Health Insurance Authority (HIA) reported that the number of people with health insurance policies is up, with 45% of the population holding a private health insurance policy at the end of 2017.** This represented an increase of 22,000 on the figure in 2016. And although the overall take up figure is down from a peak of almost 51% at the end of 2008, it remains relatively high by international standards.** Even with the introduction of the Lifetime Community Rating in 2015 which would have contributed to some of this uplift, it is probably also fair to say that as a nation we are becoming more aware of the importance of our health and the need to have cover of all types in place.”

Joe concluded by saying, “There is no escaping that money is still a big worry for many people throughout the country. However, it does not appear to weigh quite as heavily on their minds as it once did. Instead, they’re increasingly more worried about their health and focused on making health-related improvements, as well as being focused on their family. As a broker-only company we know that Financial Brokers are well placed to help alleviate some of this remaining worry and in our press release on the same topic, have encouraged people to make contact with their local Financial Broker to discuss their personal finances and the options available, as indeed, we always do.”

*Royal London iReach Survey – Which of the following is likely to be your biggest source of worry in 2019? 35-54 years old top three responses – Money (41%), Family (18%) and Health (16%)


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