South Africans lack confidence when it comes to finances

Most South African consumers feel challenged by their finances, with relatively few saying that they are highly successful at sticking to their financial goals or are knowledgeable about financial matters.

This was revealed when the Financial Planning Institute of Southern Africa (FPI) conducted a nationwide survey, in conjunction with the Financial Planning Standards Board (FPSB) and a global research firm (GfK), to determine South African citizen’s financial attitude compared to that of the average global citizen.

Both primary and shared household financial decision-makers were surveyed, 19,000 participants from 19 countries around the world, the results revealed the following key findings with regards to South Africa:

Consumers have moderate to low confidence when it comes to their finances.
Only 27% feel strongly confident when it comes to their “financial know-how”, or feel highly successful about sticking to their financial strategies. While 38% of the respondents were strongly confident that they will achieve their financial goals. These figures are higher than their respective global averages, but still aren’t promising.

Home ownership and support for loved ones are top financial priorities.
Home ownership and providing financial support for loved ones were the top financial priorities of South Africans. Other predominant priorities included being free of major debt, retiring in their desired lifestyle and managing finances to achieve life goals.

Financial planning services help to get on track financially.
South African consumers stated that the most helpful financial advice services they received were for retirement planning, budgeting, cash flow, debt management and investment planning.

Most consumers think financial planning should be regulated.
While 43% of respondents in South Africa are unsure whether financial planning is regulated (vs. 41% globally), 67% believe it’s important for financial planning to be regulated, compared to 79% globally.

Trustworthiness is the biggest issue when working with financial professionals.
87% of South African respondents believe that trustworthiness is the biggest barrier when it comes to working with a financial planner. Surprisingly, 70% said they don’t know whom to trust when it comes to financial planning even though they saw it as an important consideration.

Working with a CFP® professional helps consumers feel more knowledgeable about financial matters.
In South Africa, 37% of consumers who work with a CFP® professional report feeling strongly confident in their financial know-how. 29% of consumers who work with any financial professional feel this confident and only 25% who don’t work with any financial professional feel this confident.

It is easy to lack confidence when you don’t feel that you have the “financial know-how”. It is also easy to be overconfident. What it comes down to is not only financial knowledge, but understanding - that’s what I’m here for. I will take you through the necessary processes to formulate achievable financial goals and make you feel financially confident again!

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