Scots saving, not spending says Scottish Friendly

A rise in disposable income has turned us into a nation of savings-savvy Scots
That’s according to research by ISA and savings specialist Scottish Friendly which has revealed that Scots have been making the most of a year-on-year rise in their disposable income of 2.8 percentage points by increasing the amount they have been putting away into their savings in the last three months.
The number of Scottish savers has increased by 8.9 per cent to 2.5 million with nearly 57 per cent of Scots now regularly saving or investing each month, says the provider.
According to the latest findings from Scottish Friendly’s ‘Disposable Income Index’, the rise in the amount being saved by Scottish households has come despite being one of the few areas in the country to experience a slight dip in disposable incomes; 0.3 of a percentage point over the last quarter. (1)
The quarterly report, which looks at saving and spending habits across the UK, has revealed that after bills and essentials have been paid for, Scots are left with around 10.8 per cent of their salary in spending money, an average of £252 each month.
Calum Bennie, savings expert at Scottish Friendly, said: “It is encouraging that, while disposable incomes have fallen over the last quarter, overall Scots are still better off than they were this time last year and this has been reflected in the amount of money people are able to put aside into savings.
“It’s great that Scots are putting more money aside because this could provide a welcome safety net should, as we expect,  interest rates rise. If this does happen, we can expect the amount people have left over each month to fall dramatically, especially among homeowners, who can expect to see the cost of borrowing rise significantly.”
Quarterly change in levels of disposable income by region:
Region of the UK
Per cent of salary attributed to disposable income – Q2 2015
Per cent of salary attributed to disposable income – Q3 2015
Percentage point difference
Average disposable income Q2 2015
NATIONAL
9.9 per cent
9.7 per cent
-0.2
£240
East Midlands
10.3 per cent
11.8 per cent
1.5
£273
Yorkshire & Humberside
8.5 per cent
9.8 per cent
1.3
£208
Wales
8.7 per cent
9.6 per cent
0.9
£232
South West
10.5 per cent
11.3 per cent
0.8
£255
North East
9.2 per cent
9.2 per cent
£195
South East
9.6 per cent
9.6 per cent
£232
North West
9.3 per cent
9 per cent
-0.3
£225
Scotland
11.1 per cent
10.8 per cent
-0.3
£252
London
10 per cent
9.5 per cent
-0.5
£300
West Midlands
10 per cent
9.2 per cent
-0.8
£234
Northern Ireland
8.0 per cent
6.6 per cent
-1.4
£136
Annual change in levels of disposable income by region:
Region of the UK
Per cent of salary attributed to disposable income – Q3 2014
Per cent of salary attributed to disposable income – Q3 2015
Percentage point difference
NATIONAL
8.2 per cent
9.7 per cent
1.5
East Midlands
8.3 per cent
11.8 per cent
3.5
Scotland
8 per cent
10.8 per cent
2.8
London
6.9 per cent
9.5 per cent
2.6
South West
11.3 per cent
11.3 per cent
2.1
South East
7.7 per cent
9.6 per cent
1.9
Yorkshire & Humberside
8.7 per cent
9.8 per cent
1.1
North East
8.7 per cent
9.2 per cent
0.5
West Midlands
8.8 per cent
9.2 per cent
0.4
Wales
9.2 per cent
9.6 per cent
0.4
Northern Ireland
6.5 per cent
6.6 per cent
0.1
North West
9.1 per cent
9 per cent
-0.1
Summary:
  • Year-on-year rise in disposable income in Scotland of 2.8 percentage points – equating to 10.8 per cent of take home salary
  • Scotland is one of the few areas in the country to experience a slight dip in disposable income of 0.3 of a percentage point
  • Despite this, the number of people putting money aside increased in the last quarter by 8.9 per cent.