Finance

Mobile is empowering a new generation of savers, these stats prove it

By Oliver Smith 13 May 2016
Summary

It's official. Online banking is helping most of us to save, but it's not working for everyone.

We’ve long championed mobile and digital banking as giving more people more control over their money, and now there are stats that prove it.

Four out of five 18 to 24-year-olds (81%) say that using mobile banking is helping them to actually save money, according to Halifax’s Generation Save report. A further 65% of these young people say mobile banking makes them more likely to move money into savings accounts.

We think that’s fantastic news.

Young people are far more likely to open accounts online, while older generations will still head to their local branches.

A shocking third of all Brits don’t have any savings or investments outside of their pension – it’s one of the largest contributors to poverty amongst the elderly.

We’ve looked before at robo-investors and services like Squirrel that are trying to encourage young Brits to save and this new research confirms that, when given the right tools, we can become a nation of savers.

Read more: Wealthify – is this robo-investor the future of savings?

“This is great news if it means that young people are getting into good savings habits early in life,” said Halifax’s head of savings, Giles Martin. “Particularly at a time when reaching those key milestones like buying a first car or first home can feel out of reach for many.”

Not a savings silver bullet

While online and mobile banking are proving to be powerful in empowering the next generation to save, it’s not quite a silver bullet for everyone.

Among the older generations who use mobile banking, just one in four over 55 said that they’d be more likely to save with mobile access to their accounts, suggesting that they’re less likely to recognise the benefits.

Some of the findings from Halifax's Generation Save report.

The use of any type of online banking is also far lower amongst over 55s, with only one in five (23%) using any online banking, compared to 90% of 18 to 24-year olds.

Sadly the disparity between those with the tools to save and those digitally excluded older generations is only due to grow. The arrival of dedicated mobile banks and even smarter financial services are set to help only the tech-savvy to save.

When given the right tools, we can become a nation of savers, but we must work harder to make sure none are left behind.