The research was launched in Melbourne by The Hon. Chris Bowen MP, Minister for Financial Services, Superannuation and Corporate Law and Minister for Human Services.
Significant findings of the research included:
strong motivators are needed to overcome a ‘preference for the immediate’ and encourage people to save
personal support is a major driver of success
linking savings goals with an emotional driver like saving for a child’s education offers a powerful motivation for participants to succeed in reaching their savings goal.
Monash University Associate Dean, Professor Robert Brooks, who worked as an expert adviser on the research project, said the study provided important insights into how a successful program like Saver Plus could support long-term savings behaviour and overcome some factors which can lead to irrational financial decision-making.
“It is important to understand the complexity of human financial decision-making.
Examining the behaviour and attitudes of people participating in Saver Plus has enabled us to better understand the importance of several key elements of the program, such as the offer of support and education, as well as strong financial and emotional incentives,” Professor Brooks said.
ANZ Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Graham Hodges, said ANZ would use the findings of the research to further build on the banks’ financial literacy and inclusion programs.
ANZ would make the research results widely available to financial institutions, regulators, consumer groups and governments to encourage further discussion and action on improving financial literacy and inclusion levels in Australia.
“We have known for some time that Saver Plus was making a real difference for many participants seeking to develop their savings skills and confidence.
As a major financial institution, we have an obligation to help create pathways to financial security and prosperity, particularly for disadvantaged communities.
“This research confirms the success of our approach and provides insights that we hope will ensure the continued success of Saver Plus and potentially other programs of this type,” Mr Hodges said.