Latest Mumdex reveals kids are more financially responsible
Our latest Mumdex report reveals that the economic downturn is making kids more financially aware than ever – nearly half earn their pocket money by doing chores around the house and a quarter of eight to 18-year-olds are planning to start their own businesses in the future.
The findings have caught the eye of legendary businessman Sir Richard Branson, who’s told us how important it is to encourage kids to step into the world of business to boost the economy in the future.
He said: "Young people are full of great ideas and their natural entrepreneurial spirit should be encouraged, celebrated and supported.
“By giving the younger generation opportunities to stand on their own two feet through schemes like Start-Up Loans, which helps young people set up businesses, they will flourish and create the jobs of tomorrow.”
The research with our Mumdex panel – made up of 5,500 Asda mums – also suggests a quarter of 12-18 year-olds already have a part time job. Two thirds of mums say their 12-18 year olds are aware the family is having to watch the pennies, while half say their kids are more aware of money and its value as a result of the recession.
Hayley Tatum, Executive People Director at Asda, said: "The economic downturn has created significant challenges for the younger generation, particularly in terms of employment prospects, so it’s good to see that the recession has had some positive outcomes.
“Children today are not only more savvy when it comes to family finances, but they’re also becoming increasingly entrepreneurial – a quarter of kids we spoke to said they have ambitions to set up their own business, citing Lord Sugar, David Beckham and Sir Richard Branson as their top business role models. While these are great role models for young people, it is disappointing to see the lack of women in this list.”
She added: “Interestingly, when it comes to education, mums told us that while most kids have their sights set on university, they themselves place greater value on vocational skills and training, such as apprenticeships, with two thirds seeing this as the best route to success.”
Despite kids becoming increasingly financially aware, mums still want to see schools taking on more responsibility for teaching their kids lessons on finance and budgeting. Three quarters of mums see finance and budgeting as the most important skill kids need to lead happy and successful lives. While 89% of mums feel it’s their responsibility to teach kids the value of money, 31% also trust schools to do so, but only 20% think they are currently fulfilling this role.
Tracey Bleakley, chief executive of financial education charity PFEG (Personal Finance Education Group), said: "The fact that children are becoming more conscious of money is a welcome silver lining to some of the most difficult economic circumstances we have seen in a generation. It is crucial that we give all young people the skills, knowledge and confidence they need to manage their money well – in good times and in bad.
“After years of campaigning, financial education finally looks set to be taught in secondary schools through the new National Curriculum from September 2014. This is a big leap forward – but for financial education to be most effective it needs to be introduced in all primary schools as well.”
The Asda Mumdex optimism score rose to -13 in April, just one point higher than this time last year, but five points higher than January. The Mumdex also reveals some other ways in which kids are increasingly making mums’ lives easier:
- Two thirds of mums say their kids have actively helped them to save money in the current economic climate.
- A quarter of mums say it is their 12-18 year olds who tell them about promotions in the supermarket.
- A third of mums get their kids to help them navigate the online world