Money is biggest social taboo, study finds

Money is one of the biggest taboo topics of conversation, research has found.

Indeed, we may be blaring out ABBA’s Money, Money, Money, but a study has found that talking about cash is actually one of the biggest no go conversation topics, ahead of other subjects such as religion and politics.

A global survey, conducted by the independent financial advisory organisation deVere Group, found that 56% of those asked ranked personal finance as the most difficult subject to talk about with family, friends and colleagues.

The survey of over 700 clients in the UK, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australasia found that personal finance came ahead of topics such as intimacy, politics, religion and health issues.

The Founder and CEO of deVere Group, Nigel Green, provided a commentary: “We’re moving towards the holiday period when people, typically, are more likely to get together with loved ones than at any other time in the year.”

“But the survey shows that what they are least likely to be discussing is personal finance – including income, taxes, pensions, debt, savings and expenses,” the Founder and CEO continued.

“The taboo of talking money needs to be broken down and normalised.”

“We need to recognise and celebrate how money can truly provide individuals and their loved ones with incredible life-enhancing opportunities.”

“The de-stigmatisation of talking money would also help banish the ‘head in the sand’ attitude to personal finances that prevents many from achieving their financial goals.”

“Plus, when money is an awkward topic of conversation, it is easier for people to get an unfair deal. These people typically tend to be women, younger people and ethnic minorities. Silence about money issues can often allow the unfairness to continue unabated.”

Nigel Green concluded: “Finances can be complex and are specific to each individual. The answer is to seek independent, expert help from professionals who will be able to signpost people in the right direction. We use money every day, it’s an essential part of our lives. Therefore, we need to get more comfortable discussing it.”