Study Uncovers Cash Confusion

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Study discovers nation is confused by financial products and services

A new report from comparison website into what the people of the UK find most confusing has revealed that finance is one of the most baffling aspects of modern life. The study revealed:

  •     71.9% of people suffer from confusion over how to make money and use it wisely;
  •     Pensions are the most confusing product, with 83.9% of people finding them confusing;
  •     33.8% of people said they were 'very' or 'totally' confused by pensions;
  •     79.1% of people said they found mortgages confusing;

Credit cards were the least confusing product - 40% of people said they were not at all confused by credit cards.

The findings are part of the Confused Nation report, a study developed by the University of Bristol and, which covers a cross section of 6,000 UK residents. It explores how people feel about modern life and how they cope with its demands. The findings have been used to create a new website - - which helps baffled Brits by providing clarity on confusing issues.

Financial issues claimed two of the top ten places for 'most confusing' areas of modern life. Pensions, share prices and interest rates came in fourth position and fuel bills took seventh place. 38% of people said it was unlikely that they could correctly estimate their fuel bills. The most confusing thing was found to be bankers' bonuses. The extent of confusion and overwhelming choice was found to cause 42% of people to lie in bed awake at night trying to make decisions.

Darren Black from said: "It's not surprising that financial products and terms account for so much confusion in modern life, especially given the changes that have taken place in the sector over the last couple of years. Given the variety of different products and services available and the hectic lives many Brits live it's easy to see how making decisions could lead to stress and worry. Comparison sites can help explain the differences between confusing financial products like mortgages, credit cards and pensions, easing the burden of making decisions."

The price is right?

House prices and buying a property were also highlighted as areas of confusion within the report. The study revealed:

  •     19% of people found house prices 'very' or 'totally' confusing;
  •     80% experienced confusion over the process involved in selling a house;
  •     16% found understanding the value of their property very or totally confusing;
  •     Over half (53%) found the process involved in buying a house 'slightly' or 'moderately' confusing and a further quarter (26%) found it 'very 'or 'totally' confusing;
  •     Only one in three (30%) found the fluctuations in house prices 'not confusing at all'.


When asked about their understanding of the UK economy, the overwhelming response was of more confusion:

  •     84% found bankers bonuses confusing;
  •     80% found tax rate changes confusing;
  •     79% found exchange rates confusing;
  •     76% found interest rates confusing;
  •     75% found unemployment rates confusing.

For further information please contact the press office:

Zoe Stevens

Notes to editors

Top 10 most confusing aspects of modern life:

1. Bankers bonuses
2. Political policies
3. Global warming/carbon emissions
4. Pensions/share prices and interest rates
5. The term smart/casual
6. Job interviews
7. Fuel bills
8. Twitter predictive texts
9. US TV drama Lost
10. Flat pack furniture

A new website has been launched to bring clarity to baffled Brits:

About is one of the UK's biggest and most popular price comparison services. Launched in 2002, it generates over one million quotes per month. It has expanded its range of comparison products over the last couple of years to include home insurance, travel insurance, pet insurance, van and car insurance, motorbike insurance, breakdown cover and energy, as well as financial services products including credit cards, loans, mortgages and life insurance. is not a supplier, insurance company or broker. It provides a free, objective and unbiased comparison service. By using cutting-edge technology, it has developed a series of intelligent web-based solutions that evaluate a number of risk factors to help customers with their decision-making, subsequently finding them great deals on a wide-range of insurance products, financial services, utilities and more.'s service is based on the most up-to-date information provided by UK suppliers and industry regulators. is owned by the Admiral Group plc. Admiral listed on the London Stock Exchange in September 2004. is regulated by the FSA.


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Zoe Stevens
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