New Zealanders placed seventh of 13 countries in a survey of people’s perceptions of their own financial wellbeing.
The survey was conducted by life insurer Cigna across 13 of its key markets to provide insights into the kinds of risks insurers might seek to develop policies to cover.
More than a thousand people were polled in each of New Zealand, India, China, Thailand, Spain, the UK, United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Turkey, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea.
Each was asked to rate their financial health, and on that self-assessment, Kiwis placed themselves seventh, below some countries with a much lower GDPs per capita.
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Those included India, China and Thailand.
Kiwis’ self-professed satisfaction with their workplaces also placed in the middle of the pack, but was below some countries with lower labour standards, again including China and Thailand.
Making comparisons across countries is always fraught with difficulty, including people’s different cultural expectations, and level of reliance on family for support, but Cigna’s chief marketing officer Suzanne de Geus said the results indicated many Kiwis felt they were “consistently finding things pretty tough”.
New Zealanders’ rankings for some key aspects of their lives also gave cause for concern, though in others, New Zealanders rank themselves as doing pretty well.
Where we ranked well included:
* How positively we see “age”: Kiwis think being old means being 72, or over, making it the least ageist of all the countries in the survey. * Amount of time spent with family: 4th of 13 behind India, United Arab Emirates and Thailand. * Being able to take care of children’s health and wellbeing: 2nd of 13 behind only India. * Being able to take care of children’s financial needs: 5th of 13.
Where we ranked badly included:
* Ability to take care of parents’ financial needs: 13th of 13. * Satisfaction with family life: 8th of 13 just ahead of people in the UK. When it came to rating our own financial situation, Kiwis split into five distinct bands.
There were the 7 per cent who rated their financial situation “excellent”, and a further 17 per cent, who felt their situation was “very good”.
Then there was a middle chunk who rated their financial situation as “good”.
They were followed by 27 per cent who rated their situation as only “fair”, and a desperate 15 per cent, whose financial lives were “poor”.
Taking steps to improve their financial and physical health should be a priority for many Kiwis, de Geus said.
“I hope these insights motivate New Zealanders to continue to try to prioritise their health and get the necessary plans and protection in place to give them greater peace of mind,” she said.