People who voted Remain in last year’s EU referendum are more pessimistic about the economy and saving more money as a result, new research suggests.
The research found 26 per cent of remain voters expect to save more money in the coming year, compared to 19 per cent of Leave voters.
The emotion-based research, carried out across 4,000 Britons, found strong evidence that people who feel negative about the economy and their personal finances are more likely to plan to save. The research found 60 per cent of Remain voters are pessimistic about the UK economy compared to just 22 per cent of Leave voters.
Just 19 per cent of 18-24 year olds feel optimistic about the UK economy compared to 36 per cent of over 65s.
The researchers have interpreted the data as suggesting current affairs have a significant impact on how people feel about the economy, with the two sides of the Brexit argument currently feeling very different about the future, and adopting different approaches to saving as a result.
When asked about their personal financial situation, 32 per cent of remain voters feel pessimistic compared to 27 per cent of leave voters.
Almost half – 49 per cent of 18-24 year olds say that they are aiming to save more money in the next 12 months, compared to just 13 per cent of 50-64 year olds.
The results of this survey, conducted by You Gov on behalf of Zurich, echo the findings of an experiment from neuroscience specialists Mindlab, whose Savings in Mind research tested 900 participants to measure the effect of emotions on savings. It revealed that people exposed to negative messages are more likely to consider the importance of savings than those who only experience positive messages.
Zurich head of partnership development Rose St Louis says: “Behavioural change is often triggered by a negative stimulus, and our research shows this can prompt people to save more. Clearly, those who voted to remain in the EU are less confident in the economy than their Leave counterparts, and it seems the younger generation are taking action by choosing to put more money to one side. We should also recognise that consumer spending is a key driver for economic growth and if people are pessimistic and saving more, this could have repercussions for the wider economy.”
“While it is helpful to understand the impact of such pessimism, it is important that people are consistent and take control of their saving rather than letting this be dictated by external factors.”