Online services and mobile apps are so embedded in the lives of young adults that they expect all their financial services to be delivered that way, according to new research.
Funds network operator Calastone surveyed more than 3000 people aged 23 to 35 in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, the United States, Hong Kong and Australia, asking them about their attitudes towards personal savings, investment management and financial services more generally.
The aim was to better understand Millenials and their approach to money management.
In terms of interests, finance and investing did not rate highly. However, contrary to popular belief, financial services organisations are not viewed negatively.
In Australia, 49 per cent of respondents say they are “somewhat positive” about the finance sector and 12 per cent are “very positive”.
The report says: “Technology is clearly important to the millennial audience, with a great deal of survey respondents confirming that they organise their personal livers online and will use apps wherever possible.”
Globally, 98 per cent of Millenials use apps to perform daily activities, with 64 per cent using a banking and finance apps and 56 per cent using a payment app.
In Australia, 85 per cent manage “a great deal” of their lives online, 77 per cent say that if they can manage an aspect of their lives using an app they will and 65 per cent say they like to be at the forefront of trends in technology.
Sixty-five per cent say having online access to their account is important when choosing a financial services provider, 65 per cent say it is important to be able to make transactions online and 63 per cent say they want to get access to information at any time.
However, more than 60 per cent also want to be able to talk to an expert in person when managing their investments.
Australian Millenials spend 37 per cent of their income on accommodation (the global average is 34 per cent) and 18 per cent are not regular savers (the global average is 20 per cent).
Among those who save, the average amount of savings is $7075. Sixty-six per cent say they are not saving enough. The majority say they have a long-term savings goal.
Among those who do not save, the most common reason is that they cannot afford to.
Most young people say savings for a home is their top priority. In Australia, 27 per cent list it as their top priority, followed by savings for travel, a new property, retirement and a car.
Most Millenials use a bank account for saving and investing. Only 17 per cent of Australian Millenials own shares, 13 per cent make voluntary contributions in their superannuation accounts, 10 per cent use investment funds and 8 per cent own property that is not a family home.
Among those with investments other than savings accounts, the average balance is $4068.
Asked where they would go for advice about money management, the most common response is banks, followed by family and then an independent financial adviser.
When choosing investment funds, millennials rate long-term returns the top priority, followed by fees, transparency of the firm’s investment strategy and the reputation of the institution.
In Australia, 35 per cent say they would trust a computer algorithm to direct their investments, while 37 per cent would not and 28 per cent don’t know. Among those with investments, 48 per cent would trust a computer.