Financial strain is impacting workers in Ireland, prompting them to borrow money, enter an overdraft, or access payday loans, a new survey has revealed.
Research commissioned by Wagestream, Ireland’s first income streaming app that allows employees to access a percentage of their own earned wages before payday, revealed that more than three-quarters (78%) of workers claim that they feel financial strain before their pay cheques arrive.
Almost two in five workers (39%) report they need to borrow money before the end of the month with some degree of frequency.
Almost one in five (18%) workers claim that they have used or thought about using a payday loan company to bridge a financial gap with 6% claiming to have actually used a payday loan company in the past.
Almost half (48%) of workers claim that financial strain has resulted in them having to cancel activities with family and/or friends while more than two in five (44%) workers claim that financial strain has resulted in stress and pressure at home.
Younger workers aged 18-24 (26%) are significantly more likely to have used a payday loan company to bridge a financial gap.
This figure was more than 20 points higher than all of the other age groups.
Figures showed that women are more affected by financial strain at home and often have to cancel activities where men’s financial strain impacts performance and attendance at work.
Overall, 71% males vs 84% females feel financial strain before payday.
The survey asked where people access additional money to tide them over and just over half (55%) approached family and friends, while a third (33%) claim that they borrow money through their credit card.
17% claimed that they use their overdraft facility and 17% went to their local credit union.
Almost two in five (39%) workers claim that they have had to borrow money to pay for an unexpected event like a car breakdown, a new dishwasher etc.
Almost three in 10 (29%) of all workers claim that they are unable to save any money each month. Among those who do save money each month, the average amount of money saved is €409. Male workers (€443) claim to save more than women (€370).
One in five (21%) of 18-34 year olds claim they don’t save money while a third of those over 35 claim to not save.
GM of Wagestream Ireland, Adam Hankin, said:
“Workers are essentially giving their employers an interest free loan each month. We all work hard for our money and we should be able to access what we have earned if and when we need it.
"At Wagestream, we want to eradicate payday loan companies and help people avoid credit card and other high interest debt.
"By offering Wagestream to employees, employers can help ease the financial concerns of their staff and encourage financial wellness in the workplace.
"Removing the anxiety around payday naturally leads to a happier, more productive workforce with lower turnover."
Wagestream App allows employees to avoid borrowing money or taking out high interest loans.
Wagestream access is set to a maximum of 50% of already earned wages at the time of the transaction.