Money is a bigger taboo than sex, religion or politics, according to a survey by one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organisations.
In the global survey, conducted by deVere Group, 56% of those polled ranked personal finance as the most difficult subject to discuss with family, friends and colleagues.
It came ahead of sex (18%), politics (12%), religion (8%) and health issues (6%) in the poll of more than 700 clients in the UK, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australasia.
Nigel Green, the founder and CEO of deVere Group, comments: “We’re moving towards the holiday period when people, typically, are more likely to get together with loved ones than at any other time in the year.
“But the survey shows that what they are least likely to be discussing is personal finance – including income, taxes, pensions, debt, savings and expenses.
“Money remains the biggest social taboo.”
He continues: “The taboo of talking money needs to be broken down and normalised.
“We need to recognise and celebrate how money can truly provide individuals and their loved ones with incredible life-enhancing opportunities.
“In addition, high-net-worth individuals tend to be society’s primary wealth and job creators, major tax contributors and philanthropists.”
He goes on to add: “The de-stigmatisation of talking money would also help banish the ‘head in the sand’ attitude to personal finances that prevents many from achieving their financial goals.
“Plus, when money is an awkward topic of conversation, it is easier for people to get an unfair deal. These people typically tend to be women, younger people and ethnic minorities. Silence about money issues can often allow the unfairness to continue unabated.”
Mr Green concludes: “Finances can be complex and are specific to each individual. The answer is to seek independent, expert help from professionals who will be able to signpost people in the right direction.
“We use money every day, it’s an essential part of our lives. Therefore, we need to get more comfortable discussing it.
“Beginning a conversation about money is the first step, but it should become a normal occurrence, because as our lives change so do our financial needs and wants. Tackling the money conversation taboo is likely to lead to enhanced financial freedom and security.”