What's worse than having an affair? Lying about money
Kanebridge News
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What’s worse than having an affair? Lying about money

A new Australian survey revealed a lack of transparency about finances had potential to cause more harm to relationships than an extramarital romantic liaison

By Bronwyn Allen
Fri, Apr 12, 2024 9:30amGrey Clock 2 min

One in five Australians think lying to a partner about spending or income is worse than physically cheating or having an affair. A Finder survey of 1,096 people found Baby Boomers are the most worried about financial lies in a relationship, with 23 percent feeling concerned about it. This compares to 22 percent of millennials, 21 percent of Gen X and 18 percent of Gen Y.

Sarah Megginson, Finder’s personal finance expert, said there can be major fallout from financial secrets.

Purposefully hiding information about money is a major red flag in relationships, especially when couples share finances,” she said. Financial lies can be quite destructive and leave people feeling betrayed and untrusting. As our research shows, it can cause even more pain than a romantic affair.

Ms Megginson said people lie about money for several reasons.

For some people, the motivation to be dishonest is born out of embarrassment over a secret debt or an addiction thats gotten out of control,” she said.For others, it’s less about shame, and more about wanting to be prepared with a financial safety net in the event the relationship ends poorly, so they might have a secret account they havent told you about.

Keeping finances separate is a rising trend among couples in Australia, even if they are married with children. St George Bank surveyed 1,500 parents in 2018 and discovered only 51 percent combined their incomes in joint accounts, and 37 percent kept their money separate. The research also showed one in four people were keeping a financial secret. Women were more likely to keep a large debt secret and men were more likely to have a private savings account. Other financial indiscretions people were keeping to themselves included a large purchase or a secret credit card.

Research by Relationships Australia shows many couples are not having conversations about financial arrangements before entering into committed relationships. Four in 10 people did not discuss how their personal incomes would be shared before they committed to their partner. A majority of women (74 percent) and men (69 percent) reported no discussion about how finances would be divided if the relationship ended.

Ms Megginson said money was a source of conflict for many couples, with 40 percent of survey respondents saying the conflict related to their partners overspending. She encouraged couples to have regular, honest conversations.If you’re hiding something, consider coming clean sooner than later. The longer it goes on, the bigger the problem can grow and the more elaborate your lies are likely to become.

Financial trust is really crucial in a relationship, so its ideal if you can talk openly about money and get on the same page, and ideally support each other to reach financial goals together. If you feel like you are being taken advantage of or if you cant leave a relationship because of financial issues, contact the National Debt Helpline, she said.



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The sticky economic factor making an interest rate drop unlikely this year

It’s a key indicator in the RBA board’s decision making process, but it is proving difficult to move in the right direction

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The consumer price index (CPI) rose in April to an annual rate of 3.6 percent, which was 0.1 percent higher than in March, raising doubts about an interest rate cut this year as inflation starts looking stickier than expected. This is the second consecutive month of small rises, potentially indicating that Australia is experiencing the same stalled progress in bringing inflation down that is being seen in the United States, as both nations approach their central banks’ target inflation bands.

In Australia, the target inflation band is 2 to 3 percent, with the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) aiming to achieve the midpoint under its new agreement with the Federal Government following a formal review. In its interest rate decision-making, the RBA does not give as much weight to the monthly inflation data because not all prices are measured like they are in the quarterly data. On a quarterly basis, inflation has continued to fall. In the March quarter, the annual rate of inflation was 3.6 percent, down from 4.1 percent in December, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

CBA economist Stephen Wu noted the April data was above the bank’s forecast of 3.5 percent as well as the industrywide consensus forecast of 3.4 percent. He predicts the next leg down in inflation won’t be until the September quarter, when we will see the effects of electricity rebates and a likely smaller minimum wage increase to be announced by the Fair Work Commission next month compared to June 2023.

The most significant contributor to the April inflation rise were housing costs, which rose 4.9 percent on an annual basis. This reflects a continuing rise in weekly rents amid near-record low vacancy rates across the country, as well as significantly higher labour and materials costs which builders are passing on to the buyers of new homes, as well as renovators.

The second biggest contributor was food and non-alcoholic beverages, up 3.8 percent annually, reflecting higher prices for fruit and vegetables in April. The ABS said unfavourable weather led to a reduced supply of berries, bananas and vegetables such as broccoli. The annual rate of inflation for alcohol and tobacco rose by 6.5 percent, and transport rose by 4.2 percent due to higher fuel prices.

Robert Carnell, the Asia Pacific head of research at ING, said they no longer expect a rate cut this year after seeing the April data. Mr Carnell said an increase in trend inflation was apparent and “rate cuts this year look unlikely”. In the RBA’s latest monetary policy statement, published before the April CPI was released, it said: “Inflation is expected to be higher in the near term than previously thought due to the stronger labour market and higher petrol prices. But inflation is still expected to return to the target range in the second half of 2025 and to reach the midpoint in 2026.”

 

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11 ACRES ROAD, KELLYVILLE, NSW

This stylish family home combines a classic palette and finishes with a flexible floorplan

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Just 55 minutes from Sydney, make this your creative getaway located in the majestic Hawkesbury region.

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