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BBC Big Money Test data now available

Article dated: 26 April 2017

What does your attitude to money say about you? Download the data from the BBC Big Money Test, 2011 - an online survey conducted as part of the BBC Big Money Test to examine our emotional and attitudinal relationship to money.

In the spring of 2011, BBC consumer affairs programme Watchdog, along with Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis, launched an online survey of people's emotional and psychological relationships with money. The BBC Lab UK's Big Money Test was designed by Mark Fenton-O’Creevy, Open University, and Adrian Furnham, University College London, to develop ways of characterising people’s psychological and emotional relationships with money and to examine how they affect financial health.

More than 109,000 people took part in this survey, making it one of the largest studies in money psychology. Participants were asked a series of questions about their financial knowledge, money management, attitudes towards money and their shopping habits. They also reported any financial difficulties they had experienced.

The results showed there is much more to managing money than financial knowledge and capability: they demonstrated emotions also have a key role in determining how people manage their money.

The researchers identified key findings:
  • Money makes many people feel worried, guilty and anxious. The survey revealed that over 40% of people said they constantly worried about spending money and a third said they thought about money all the time
  • Impulse shopping can lead to disastrous financial problems. People who bought goods impulsively were three times more likely to go bankrupt, and four times more likely to run out of money by the end of the week
  • If money makes you feel powerful you are more likely to encounter money problems, perhaps from buying status symbols beyond your means, while those who get security from money were less likely to struggle with their finances
  • Being able to make ends meet is crucial for us to be able to manage our money well, more so than financial knowledge
  • Attitude to money and financial success tend to improve with age, even more so for men than women
Further information and results from the survey are available in this BBC Science article.

Combining data from the BBC Big Personality Test
Some participants who responded to the BBC Big Money Test survey also took part in the BBC Big Personality Test, 2009-2011, hosted by BBC Lab UK. Responses to both surveys can be matched as participants used the same unique ID. The BBC Big Money Test, 2011 includes a combined dataset containing 3,869 respondents who completed both surveys.

You can download data from the BBC Big Money Test, 2011 and the BBC Big Personality Test, 2009-2011 from the UK Data Service.

Do you want to find out what your attitude to money says about you? Try the BBC Big Money Test.  

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