Leading local advice charity, Citizens Advice Exeter, today releases the results from its fifth economic well-being survey.
Citizens Advice Exeter Chief Executive Steve Barriball said: “A key finding is that more than half of those who responded to the survey, some 62%, said that they were worried about their financial position. This is up significantly from 51% earlier in the year. Whilst income levels seem to have stabilised, with 61% of those responding saying their income levels remained the same, only 18% of respondents had seen their expenditure reduce. 41% of those who participated in the survey told us that they had received a pay rise in the last year. This is the lowest level since we started these surveys almost two years ago.”
Steve continued: “The largest area of borrowing, some 40%, was from friends and family. This suggests that for many people the ability to borrow through more traditional sources, such as credit cards or loans and overdrafts, are becoming limited for those working on short-term or zero-hours contracts. The inability to demonstrate a secure level of income reduces the borrowing options of many people.”
Steve finished by saying: “In terms of job satisfaction, overall, some 80% of respondents were fairly happy or better with their employment situation. This is 4% lower than in January 2017 and the same level as in July last year. For the first time we also asked about job security. Some 68% of respondents rated their employment situation as fairly secure or better. This is something we will ask again in future surveys as, whilst headline job figures continue to look positive, there is a suggestion here that job satisfaction and security is still an issue for some.”
A summary of the results of the survey, run in partnership with the Express and Echo, Radio Exe, Exeter City Council and Exeter Chamber of Commerce, will be published on the charity’s website – www.citizensadviceexeter.org.uk – and can be found enclosed.