Savings down this autumn

On average, Britons are setting aside £82.92 (6.69%) as a percentage of their income every month, this is a decline from 12 months ago, when the population was saving £88.65.

This figure also represents the lowest recorded level for autumn since the survey began and is down from last quarter, summer 2010, when the average amount saved per month was £87.37. This drop could be a result of declining income levels compared with 12 months ago. Average monthly take-home income has fallen from £1,384.20 in autumn 2009 to £1,239.10 this quarter.

Male savers have been affected by this downturn in savings with savings levels falling from £107.35 in autumn 2009 to £103.15 this quarter. The amount women are managing to put aside each month, has also decreased, down from £71.07 12 months ago, to £63.43 this year.

On average, only half of the population (50%) say they save money every month. This is higher than autumn 2009, but slightly lower compared to last quarter, summer 2010 (52%). The actual amount these people are managing to set aside has declined, down from £203.17 in autumn 2009 to £172.28 this quarter. This is the lowest this level has been since autumn 2006.

Looking ahead, people are slightly more optimistic about their savings in the coming year. On average, 29% of savers think they are more likely to save in 2011. In fact, since autumn 2008 the number who think they are more likely to save in the year ahead has increased from 25%, and the number who say they are less likely has decreased from 40% to 27% in autumn 2010.

Tim Mack, savings spokesman, NS&I, continued: "It is pleasing to see that nearly a third of people are now feeling positive about their ability to set money aside next year. Many people appear to be approaching the New Year as an opportunity to review their finances and start 2011 on the right track."