Trends - Money


Attitudes to earning, spending and saving money 1983-2004

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A report from the Schools Health Education Unit, written using data from the Health Related Behaviour Questionnaire surveys. The report uses a sample of 370,049 young people between the ages of 12-15 from across the UK.

When looking over the figures since 1983 we find that, in recent years, young people are more likely to...
  • put money into savings schemes, with around 35% of males compared to around 30% of females report saving money. 12-13 year old males consistently report more interest and 14-15 year old females least interest in saving money
Trends in Savings 1993-2004 Young people and putting money into a saving scheme

  • spend more: up to 45% of 14-15 year olds (2003) report spending more than £10 'last week'. In 2004, 10% of 14-15 year old males spent more than £40 'last week'
  • spend more on recorded music, clothes and footwear, computer games and fast foods. In 2004 - 12-13 year old females: clothes/footwear and recorded music, 12-13 year old males: computer games and 14-15 year olds males: fast food
We also find that young people in recent years are less likely to...
  • have a regular, paid term-time job - around 37% of 14-15 year olds in the last few years compared to over 40% in the 1980s and early 1990s have worked more than 5 hours in the 'previous week' - around 40% of 14-15 year olds in the last few years compared to around 50% in the late 1980s and early 1990s spend money on sweets and chocolates
We also find little change in the numbers of young people who.
  • carry out paid work baby sitting or a paper round
  • spend money on cigarettes, alcohol, cosmetics and toiletries

For comments on this report contact
Dr David Regis Research Manager

Tel:01392 667272


ORDER publications

  1. SHEU is an independent research, survey and publishing company and the 'Young People into ...' series of reports are based on the work of one of its divisions - The Schools Health Education Unit. The Unit provides reliable baseline data for local needs assessment to inform plans in health, education and care.
  2. The accumulated databank from the hundreds of school surveys we support each year, involving tens of thousands of young people, is a valuable resource of information and provides many opportunities for research. But we caution against simple reporting and interpretation of our figures as being from 'a national survey'.
  3. In 2014 we compared the profile of the schools in our data sets with what we can see in the country as a whole (see link), and we were pleasantly surprised by the similarity.  This confirms what we concluded in 2004 through a similar study: that the SHEU data sets are reasonably well-matched to the national population of schools.