Finance & Economics

In the UK, money is bigger taboo than sex – survey

Half of UK adults believe that talking about personal money matters is taboo

In the UK, money is bigger taboo than sex – survey. Source:

Money is a bigger taboo than sex, religion or politics, according to new YouGov research commissioned by Lloyds Bank. 50% of UK adults believe that talking about personal money matters is taboo in everyday conversation; higher than sex (42%), religion (26%) or politics (14%).

The research also found that people don’t talk about money with their loved ones. More than two fifths (44%) of people have avoided discussions about money and a quarter (25%) have lied to family and friends about their personal finances.  When conversations do happen, they stir up a range of emotions – almost a third (32%) of people said they find it stressful talking about their finances with family and friends and two fifths (43%) said they had felt embarrassed.

This reluctance to discuss money matters is causing problems in people’s personal relationships:

  • Over a third (37%) of people in a relationship have argued with their partner about money;
  • Over a fifth (23%) have lied to their partner about money; most commonly, people are lying to conceal the amount of debt they have (11%);
  • Just under a third (30%) have argued with a friend about money, with lending money the main cause of arguments (17%);
  • 27% have lied to parents about their personal finances; they are most likely to lie about how much they spend on a single item (14%), how much debt they have (13%) and their monthly spending (11%);
  • Over half (56%) of young people aged 18-34 are worried about getting on the property ladder, but just 32% have talked to their parents about it;
  • Nevertheless, three fifths (61%) of people said they feel better when they do open up and talk about their money concerns.

These findings made Lloyds Bank launch The M-word, a campaign to destigmatize talking about money, and a series of ‘The M-word Courses’ to help people talk about money at key life stages such as getting married, leaving home, or managing their finances for Christmas.

SEE ALSO: Personal budgeting step by step

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