One in 10 people over the age of 40 have confessed to secretly hiving off cash and investments without their partner's knowledge, new research from insurer Prudential has shown.
The annual survey found 10 per cent have secret savings, investments and/or pensions, each with an average value of £30,300. Perhaps more worryingly, 15 per cent admitted to having hidden debts, averaging £8,000 .
Helping to fund retirement and ensuring financial security in the event of a break-up were the two most common reasons for keeping some aspects of their finances secret.
"Hiding such significant sums in savings or debts from a partner makes financial planning for the future very difficult," Vince Hughes, retirement expert at Prudential, said.
"For example, taking unexpected debts into retirement could make a significant dent in the joint income that the couple was expecting to be able to live on."
"In addition, keeping income or stashes of cash secret could mean that couples are not making the most of the pension saving tax relief or allowances available to them."