Steady state of saving
Consumers in the Netherlands come a close second with 27% of consumers growing their savings across the year. Taking Europe as a whole, the rate of consumer saving remained similar to levels recorded in the 2014 survey suggesting a steady state of saving.
Stability across Europe
Overall, the 2015 survey painted a picture of stability across Europe as neither personal savings nor debt positions deteriorated from the levels recorded in 2014. So, while the number of European consumers adding to their savings failed to increase over the last 12 months, consumers were no more likely to dip into their savings either, according to ING.
The Netherlands tops the ING Savings Comfort League this year
For the last four years, respondents to the ING International Survey on Savings have been asked how comfortable they are with the amount of money they have in savings - a question that taps into feelings around money. The Netherlands tops the ING Savings Comfort League this year with the highest proportion saying they are very comfortable or comfortable with the amount they have in savings, up one place from second last year.
38% of people in Europe say they do not have any savings
It is a small rise on last year and rises to a high of 60% in Romania. Rises were seen in 10 of the 13 countries surveyed. In the survey, savings was defined as money readily available (specifically excluding pensions and policies that may pay out in the future), according to ING.
Fewer are saying the current economic situation has led to a deterioration in their finances
In nine of the 13 countries surveyed, fewer people compared with this time last year are saying the current economic situation has led to a deterioration in their finances. It suggests more feel the wider economic environment is improving, despite pressure on the savings stockpile of some people.
More likely to know how much interest they are paid on savings than how much they are paying on debts
Balancing savings with paying off debts appears to continue to challenge many people in Europe. Somewhat alarmingly, respondents are more likely to know how much interest they are paid on savings than how much they are paying on debts. And some appear to be missing an opportunity to use their savings to pay off high interest debt more quickly, with 44% in Europe with credit card debt saying they also have savings. There is widespread caution around borrowing, with about four-in-five in Europe agreeing "It is easy to borrow money and get trapped in a cycle of debt". The level of agreement is high across all of the 13 countries surveyed and there is little difference in the attitude of those people who have debt and those who do not, according to ING.