Over-50s trust Martin Lewis over financial advisers, study finds

Over-50s would trust the financial expertise of Martin Lewis more than that of financial advisers, a new study has indicated.

According to research conducted by LiveMore, more people would trust the advice of the financial expert and founder of MoneySavingExpert over banks and financial institutions, whose advice they often find “patronising, condescending and self-serving”.

LiveMore’s research was based on a study of more than 2,000 people between the ages of 50 and 90 years old. It found that when respondents were asked to say which financial advice they trust the most, the highest number (35%) put Martin Lewis top, above friends and family (30%) and their own online research (29%).

Bank managers were the least trusted, cited by just 15% of respondents, while financial advisers were cited by slightly more at 22%.

One in seven respondents (14%) said they feel like a “forgotten generation” when it comes to financial products. Some felt that the financial institutions were either not working on their behalf, did not have enough information for them or over-promoted certain products to ensure a sale.

LiveMore CEO, Leon Diamond, commented: “It’s become fashionable for the financial industry to criticise Martin Lewis but that’s because it’s threatened by him.

“His critics say he’s a journalist, not a financial expert, but whether they like it or not, he has consistently shone a light on an industry which is often less than transparent – and that has created a trust issue. When it comes to 50 to 90 year-olds, the findings of our survey show how stark that lack of trust has become with formal industry advice languishing near the bottom of the rankings.

“People are now looking to do their own research, they want to come to their own conclusions and, when they do so, the industry’s impenetrable language of rates and commission fees pushes them into the space owned by Martin Lewis – where the language is more transparent and where all the options are, frankly, explained more clearly.”

Diamond also suggested the mortgage industry’s preference for short-term rates has been a big part of the trust issue.

“In the US and Europe, 10, 15 or 30-year fixed rate mortgages are common,” he added. “While in the UK, the industry continues to work on short-term two or five-year cycles.

“We are at the end of the era of cheap money and, in increasingly uncertain times like these, paying a bit more for longer-term certainty has to be the right advice for a lot of people – particularly those aged 50 to 90, whose incomes are often based on more volatile pensions and savings.

“Our industry has to listen to these voices. It has to be about what’s best for the borrower.”

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