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How much Australians really have saved in the bank as JobSeeker, JobKeeper comes to an end

A surprising number of Australians have less than $1,000 in the bank even though middle-income earners have become better savers.

The ME Bank’s household financial comfort report has revealed how much couples and individuals living alone really have tucked away, with single parents and casual workers in a particularly precarious position.

During the second half of 2020, Australians were typically saving an extra $937 every month, in preparation for JobSeeker coronavirus supplements and JobKeeper wage subsidies coming to an end this month.

A record 57 per cent of Australians were saving each month – a big increase from 49 per cent at the end of 2019.

A surprising number of Australians have less than $1,000 in the bank even though middle-income earners have become better savers

A surprising number of Australians have less than $1,000 in the bank even though middle-income earners have become better savers

A surprising number of Australians have less than $1,000 in the bank even though middle-income earners have become better savers

Nonetheless, one in five households have less than $1,000 saved up. 

Poorer people would struggle to have enough left over for an emergency.

‘A large proportion of households continue to have no savings or very low amounts of cash savings – and hence, are highly vulnerable to a loss of income – related to fewer hours worked and job loss – especially as the government plans to continue to withdraw the temporary wage subsidy – JobKeeper – and reduce the unemployed income supplement to JobSeeker and other welfare assistance,’ the ME Bank report said.

Almost half of 46 per cent of low-income households earning less than $40,000 a year had less than $1,000 in savings. 

By comparison, one in three – or 31 per cent – of single parents had less than $1,000 in the bank with 17 per cent of them having less than $100 to their name.

A quarter, or 24 per cent, of part-time workers had less than $1,000 in savings, compared with 22 per cent of the unemployed and one in five or 21 per cent of casual workers.

During the second half of 2020, Australians were typically saving an extra $937 every month, in preparation for JobSeeker coronavirus supplements and JobKeeper wage subsidies coming to an end this month. Pictured is a Commonwealth Bank branch in Canberra

During the second half of 2020, Australians were typically saving an extra $937 every month, in preparation for JobSeeker coronavirus supplements and JobKeeper wage subsidies coming to an end this month. Pictured is a Commonwealth Bank branch in Canberra

During the second half of 2020, Australians were typically saving an extra $937 every month, in preparation for JobSeeker coronavirus supplements and JobKeeper wage subsidies coming to an end this month. Pictured is a Commonwealth Bank branch in Canberra

Middle-income earners were in a better position with only 16 per cent of those earning $40,000 to $75,000 having less than $1,000 in savings.

That fell to 9 per cent for average and above-average workers or households earning more than $75,000.

Across all income levels, 8 per cent of households reported have less than $100 in the bank.

One in five, or 19 per cent, had less than $1,000 in savings, compared with 21 per cent in June 2020 and 26 per cent in December 2019 before the Covid pandemic.  

A record 57 per cent of Australians were saving each month - a big increase from 49 per cent at the end of 2019. Pictured are shoppers in Melbourne's Bourke Street Mall

A record 57 per cent of Australians were saving each month - a big increase from 49 per cent at the end of 2019. Pictured are shoppers in Melbourne's Bourke Street Mall

A record 57 per cent of Australians were saving each month – a big increase from 49 per cent at the end of 2019. Pictured are shoppers in Melbourne’s Bourke Street Mall

Despite poorer Australians struggling with money, a significant proportion of the population has a lot in the bank.

One in five, or 22 per cent, of households have more than $100,000 saved up, with that kind of money usually used for a mortgage deposit.

Another 12 per cent had $50,000 to $100,000 in savings. 

By comparison, 11 per cent had savings of $1,000 to $5,000 while 10 per cent had $10,000 to $20,000 stashed away.

The ME Bank study was based on an online survey of 1,500 Australian adults.

Across all income levels, 8 per cent of households reported have less than $100 in the bank

Across all income levels, 8 per cent of households reported have less than $100 in the bank

Across all income levels, 8 per cent of households reported have less than $100 in the bank

Source: Daily Mail Australia | World News

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