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Survey Highlights Regional Differences

23 August 2005

Financial Attitudes Survey Highlights Regional Differences

Where you live has a lot to do with attitudes towards wealth, debt, money and spending, according to a recent survey* by Bank of New Zealand.

The telephone survey of 500 people centred on three main subject areas: attitudes to personal wealth, attitudes to the wealth of others and attitudes to debt and credit cards. The results highlighted some surprising differences between Aucklanders, Wellingtonians and Cantabrians.

The survey results could dispel a few regional stereotypes, as well as create some new ones, says Bank of New Zealand General Manager Personal Financial Services, Blair Vernon. “Aucklanders say they are excited by money and wealth and they are apparently astute about debt. Wellingtonians say that making money is a burden and they are unimpressed by wealth. Those from Canterbury say they are conservative, but are willing take on debt if it can help achieve goals.”

Aucklanders say they plan their financial affairs, and tend to make their own decisions on money matters. In keeping with Auckland being the financial centre of the country, the region’s residents are impressed by wealth and the success of others.

Auckland’s diverse ethnic mix shows through, with 58% of those surveyed identifying as global citizens. Aucklanders say they are debt-averse, and show the most discipline in the management of their credit cards, with 59% of Aucklanders always paying their credit card off in full each month.

Fiercely independent Wellingtonians are apparently the least likely to take advice on money matters. They say they are unimpressed by wealth and accordingly pay the least attention to business news. Wellingtonians are more likely to buy on credit and worry about it later, with 37% of those surveyed saying they sometimes do not pay their credit card off in full each month.

Cantabrians are conservative when it comes to money matters, with nearly three-quarters of those surveyed saying that they plan carefully. They are most likely to take advice on money matters, which may explain their willingness to take on debt – as long as it helps them reach their goals. They are apparently far more interested in local news than global bulletins.

“The results show us that while we are all New Zealanders, there are some important regional differences which will help us better understand our customers and what motivates them - and design products that best suit their needs,” Mr Vernon says.

ENDS

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