The financial state of Kenyans has worsened with just 1 in 10 earning more now than they did before the Covid-19 pandemic. This is according to the first-ever Old Mutual Financial Services Monitor that indicates that 48% of Kenyans are financially stressed.
The survey found that 59% of Kenyans allocate their monthly income to living expenses, which is higher than Africa’s average of 51%.
“At Old Mutual, we believe that knowledge is the cornerstone of financial empowerment. The Old Mutual Financial Services Monitor will serve as a reliable annual indicator of Kenyan financial behaviour, enabling us to create customized financial wellness journeys for our customers as their needs evolve,” said Arthur Oginga, the Group CEO of Old Mutual East Africa.
The survey established that the top financial priorities for most Kenyans include income security, expense reduction, and debt repayment, with 7 in 10 Kenyans having a personal loan of some form.
Due to financial stress, only 26% of Kenyans are actively saving for retirement. In addition, about 90% of Kenyans lack confidence in having sufficient retirement savings. They instead, rely on the hope that their children will support them during their old age, with only a small percentage expecting government assistance.
The survey found that 50% of Kenyans own micro businesses, and 22% are earning an extra income alongside their regular jobs, showcasing a robust hustling spirit.
“After analysing the consumer financial attitudes and behaviours of Kenyans, the necessity for comprehensive financial wellness support is evident, covering day-to-day expenses, debt and income management, and long-term savings. This is a role that Old Mutual already plays, but will ramp up to equip more families with the relevant tools to thrive,” said Oginga.
He says the Old Mutual Financial Services Monitor targets to empower the community to make informed decisions and, in turn, foster greater financial wellbeing across the nation.