Even when things are going well, almost 40 per cent of Australians ‘stress out’ about their personal finances, according to a new ANZ survey into Australians’ views on money.

The Australia’s Money Confidence 2013 survey asked almost 12,000 Australians about how they think about money. It concluded that 61 per cent of people who are confident about their finances have plans in place to help them achieve major goals, while most of those who aren’t confident don’t have a plan in place.

ANZ’s Managing Director of Retail Distribution, Mark Hand, said that the survey shows that a lot of Australians are putting off planning their finances at a time when they should be building towards their goals.

“The research looks at how people think and feel about money, and shows that a lot of Australians worry about their finances, even when things are going well. We understand these concerns and encourage all Australians to take action to build their money confidence, rather than putting it off or trying not to think about it,” Mr Hand said.

“A proactive plan can also help you make the most of your money and achieve goals faster, regardless of changes to the economy or other factors outside of your control.”

Key findings include:

  • 39% agree “even when things are going well for me financially, thinking about money stresses me out”.
  • Women tend to worry more than men, with 51% of female respondents saying they find dealing with money stressful and overwhelming, compared to 37% of men
  • One third of respondents say worrying about finances causes sleepless nights (33%) and 39% feel anxious.
  • 37% of respondents talk to their partner/spouse to alleviate financial stress and one in three exercises (33%).
  • While the vast majority say it’s important to have a long term financial plan (84%), just one in five respondents say they currently use a financial planner or advisor (21%).
  • 83% of those not confident about their future financial security either “procrastinate” or “try not to think about it” when it comes to putting a financial plan in place.
  • Most respondents say they have some form of financial fear; with the most common financial fears being not having enough money to live comfortably in the future (48%), and not being able to maintain their current lifestyle in the future (28%).