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Britons putting away more for a rainy day

BRITONS are saving one fifth more than they were a decade ago by putting an average of £98 a month aside for a rainy day.

Despite sluggish wage growth, research by Treasury-backed savings provider NS&I found people are saving the equivalent of 7.76% of their incomes every month. This compares with an average of £82 a month, or 6.70% of their incomes, 10 years ago.

Women have also been narrowing the gap to save almost as much as men do over the period as a percentage of their income. Women now put £81 a month away typically, equating to around 7.76% of their income, while men save £115 a month on average, or around 7.81% of their wages.

But the gender divide looks set to continue, with 16% of women saying they are more likely to save money in the next quarter, compared with 18% of men.

Patrick Connolly, head of communications at financial advisers Chase de Vere, said the financial crisis has helped educate people on the importance of saving money but that Britons were still not doing enough.

"Too many people still don't recognise the need for long-term savings, naively believing the state or their employer will look after them in retirement, while others are simply unable to save more as their household budgets have been squeezed," he warned.

The NS&I's survey of more than 2400 adults also highlighted how technology improvements are causing a major shift in the way people are managing their money.

With 74% now sorting out their finances online compared with 29% a decade ago, only half of those surveyed said they were visiting branches in person as more turn to smartphones. But despite increasing access to banking services, 28% said they feel more worried about saving money than they did 10 years ago.

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