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Many New Zealanders forced to re-think spending habits because Covid-19 downturn, survey finds

Kiwis have been forced to re-think spending habits in the wake of Covid-19, a new survey has revealed.

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The downturn has shocked many Kiwis into changing how they think about the way they're spending. Source: 1 NEWS

Nearly 60 per cent of New Zealanders have been financially impacted in the wake of the Covid-19 lockdown, a survey has revealed.

With close to 40,000 job losses in April alone, thousands more people have needed Government financial help as unemployment rates soar.

Kiwisaver provider AMP surveyed people before and after lockdown on how they viewed their finances.

“Nearly 60 per cent of the people who responded said they’ve already experienced impacts to their household in terms of impact of financial effects, reduced hours, or reduced income,” AMP wealth management chief executive Blair Vernon said.

And 70 per cent of people say they'll make a financial change now - such as reducing spending – while nearly six in 10 would maintain their Kiwisaver payments at the expense of other outgoings.

Only a quarter of people surveyed know what their Kiwisaver balance may be when they retire, people in their 40s are one of the big groups spurred into action, such as speaking to advisors.

“We decided to change and just go one notch down into a moderate growth fund so that we keep the risk at bay,” Chaya Mohit said.

With interest rates set to stay very low for some time yet it's a tough time for those trying to save, the advice is to seek help no matter what you're saving for.

Banks and other financial institutions have seen a spike in calls for that help.

“Lots of enquiries around hardship and it really pre-dated some of the government announcements around support, and so people were looking at whether their Kiwisaver balance would be a place to draw some funds from,” said Mr Vernon.