UK savers know more about finance than you might think

Michael Bow
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Good news for proponents of financial education. People in the UK have are more financially literate than almost every other nationality on earth, a new study has found.

Brits came third in a global study of 16 countries that examined who knew their passive from their active, beating out countries such as the US, Japan, Germany, Canada, Hong Kong and France.

Only retail investors from Singapore and Australia scored better than UK investors in the 13-question quiz, conducted by the State Street Center for Applied Research.

Around 18 per cent of UK retail investors scored 10 out of 13, while 15 per cent scored 11 (only nine per cent of non-UK respondents scored 11).

Part of the reason for the presence of Singapore and Australia at the top of the list could lie in the one rare financial aspect both countries share: compulsory defined contribution contribution pension schemes.

Both nations have a health culture of saving for retirement, where saving plans and funds are discussed at length, much as the weather is in the UK.

Compulsory retirement saving has not yet been introduced in the UK. But with the introduction of auto-enrolment and the National Employment Savings Trust it might not be long before the UK dislodges both nations from the top of tree.

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