Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Are You a Saint or a Sinner?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Are You a Saint or a Sinner?

Article excerpt

Byline: By Julia Kennard

Most adults in the North-East would not correct a shop assistant if they were undercharged, it was claimed yesterday.

More than two thirds of people interviewed for a new survey confessed they would rather pocket the change than be a saint and own up to the mistake.

The report, published today by Scottish Widows, found the mischievous tactics were adopted nationwide by people keen to make some extra cash.

Nationally, one in two adults admitted to failing to correct a shop assistant when undercharged and one in six admitted to not settling debts with family and friends. And one in 10 has returned goods they have damaged or worn.

In addition, people also admitted bad habits when it came to their own finances: one in three set aside no money for emergencies, 50pc do not save on a regular basis, 20pc are overdrawn before each pay day and one in eight throw out bank and credit card statements without opening them.

Financial advisor Kim Addavide said: "Obviously I cannot comment on people's moral behaviour, but I would say there is a lot of evidence to support the fact that a lot of people do not set money aside for emergencies or save regularly. The problem is that many people who own store cards or credit cards tend to bury their heads in the sand. that somehow the cash is not real.

"I have got clients, very well educated, who have store cards and who look at me blankly when I ask them if they know what the interest rate is. When I tell them that it is 20pc they look at me in utter horror ( they cannot grasp it."

The survey also found that saints and sinners differ across the country.

The Scots are the most likely to return money they find in the street (64pc), Southerners are the most likely to pay back money they borrow from family and friends (86pc) and Midlanders are positively saintly when it comes to money ( being the most likely to have set money aside for emergencies (72pc).

Men were also discovered to be twice as likely to brag about money than women.

Age is also a factor when it comes to money, the biggest financial sinners in Britain are by far the under 50s ( and in this group the 18-29 year olds are the most culpable. …

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