22pc of UK households still ‘financially vulnerable’
As part of the study which covered 20 nations, the number of ‘financially vulnerable’ British households rose by 1% from 2012 to 22% in 2013.
In contrast just 9% of households consider themselves ‘financially secure’, less than half the number recorded back in 2007.
And more than half of householders have experienced some financial difficulties in last 12 months.
Simon Crone, vice-president of mortgage insurance Europe at Genworth Financial, said: “Consumer confidence is lagging some way behind the recovery and, perhaps unsurprisingly, great swathes of British households are feeling less secure than they were pre-2007.
“Consumer confidence is lagging some way behind the recovery and, perhaps unsurprisingly, great swathes of British households are feeling less secure than they were pre-2007.”
On a national basis Britain placed fifth on the financial security table, higher than Germany or France, as just 6% of French households consider themselves ‘financially secure’, yet behind Nordic countries, where 14% see themselves as ‘financially secure’.
Britons are still concerned about their financial security, with over four in 10 of householders saying they feel stress as a result of money issues while just 21% feel their job is more secure than a year ago.
Crone added: “Financial vulnerability comes from a number of different pressures including meeting higher cost of living expenses, ongoing low wage growth, its impact on savings levels and future concerns over job security.
“We still have many households that are financially fearful about what might be coming over the economic horizon and this undoubtedly is holding them back – particularly when it comes to making large, long-term commitments such as purchasing a home.”
The data revealed a generation gap, as 63% of under-55s had experienced financial difficulties in the last month, compared to a third of under-55s.
Under-35 year olds are far more positive regarding their financial prospects than 35-64-year olds, with 37% compared to 19% expecting things to improve financially in the next year.