Analysis of the questions sent to Sorted by the public as part of Money Week 2020 shows KiwiSaver was the most common topic among those seeking information.
This year’s Money Week theme was “Just wondering”, encouraging New Zealanders to send their money questions to Sorted and receive personal answers.
More than 1000 questions were sent in during the August campaign, and 861 were analysed by the CFFC's Research Lead, Dr Celestyna Galicki. She found 152 questions were about KiwiSaver, with subject areas ranging from how KiwiSaver worked to withdrawal rules, contribution levels and what to do with the fund in retirement.
Galicki found there were five other areas into which most of the remaining questions fell: budgeting, investing, property, debt and retirement.
Across all six topics, there were six distinct needs:
- Basic knowledge about how a product or policy works (mostly in KiwiSaver / retirement subjects).
- Practical and detailed how-to guides and tips, especially on saving and debt repayment, that also address the emotional side of financial behaviour.
- Help with making a choice between two or more options.
- Help dealing with hardship, especially recent hardship as a result of COVID-19; a number of questions touched on laws and regulations, such as employment law, access to welfare benefits, what a lender is allowed to do when collecting debt.
- Reassurance and explanation that addresses fear of the future and distrust of financial services.
- Help understanding the economic and legal environment – the regulations and macroeconomic processes (especially in relation to COVID-19, eg redundancies and wage subsidies).
Galicki’s report has been sent to CFFC stakeholders and will help inform Sorted’s activity in the year to come.
The CFFC’s Personal Finance Lead, Tom Hartmann, said it was encouraging the Money Week campaign had been successful in prompting New Zealanders to open up about their money questions and seek answers from Sorted.
“It reinforced that Kiwis are looking for information they can trust. We at Sorted are pleased we can help by providing independent guides and tools that will help people make the best decisions for themselves and their whānau.”