ING Newsroom

Men more willing to share finances than women

Published on 04/05/2012

Friday, 4 May 2012: Research carried out by ING DIRECT has shown twice as many men, than women, cited “being in love…” as a reason to open a joint bank account. Men were also more likely to initiate the ‘joint account’ conversation.

Aside from the obvious benefits of having a joint account – to help with saving and budgeting – nearly ten per cent listed ‘having greater visibility of my partners’ financial activity’ as a benefit.

Key findings include:

  • 67% have a joint account with their partner
  • 20% of men compared with 10% of women cited “being in love and trusting their partner” as a reason to open a joint account
  • One in five (22%) couples had not opened a joint account because their partner could not control their spending
  • While most couples had knowledge of their partners’ accounts, 19 per cent maintained a secret account
  • Men were the initiators to opening a joint account (43% vs 34% of women)

ING DIRECT’s Lisa Claes said “We were genuinely surprised by the results of the survey, there appears to be a clear difference between what men and women think when it comes to opening a joint bank account.”

When and why couples open a joint account?

Most respondents (27%) opened a joint account with their partner within the first two years of their relationship; 23 per cent within the first five years; 21 per cent within the first 12 months and a high percentage waited until they were married (20%).

Getting engaged or married was the most common reason to open a joint account (31%); followed by “a shared savings goal” like a holiday or buying a home (at 23%) and moving in together (18%).

However, one in five had an account they kept secret from their partner

  • Almost half (47%) used their secret account as an extra source of funds for going out/eating out; 41% used it as an extra place for savings – with more women using it for savings (53%), compared with men (33%).
  • More than one in five (23%) used their secret account to buy items their partner may not approve of
  • Men were more inclined to use their secret funds for their lifestyle (51% vs 41% women) and are guilty of using their secret account to buy items their partner may not approve of (27% vs 17% of women who do the same). 
  • 10% of men kept a secret account from their partner for their own personal spending versus 7% of women.  

“Women were far more conservative with their secret account, using it as a place for extra saving instead of secret purchases,” said Claes

Of those without a joint account:

  • 70% of respondents said remaining financially independent was the main reason not to open a joint account; 22% said because their partner couldn’t control their spending and 15% said it would be too hard if they broke up.
  • More women (73%) noted ‘financial independence’ as the reason not to have a joint account, compared to 67% of men.
  • 10% of people didn’t trust their partner with money or were too afraid to ask about opening a joint account.  

This research was carried out by iLink through an online survey of approximately 1,000 Australians aged 25-40 in March 2012.

Using Orange Everyday as a joint account: 

  • Automatic bill payment – perfect for paying rent and household bills on time from one account
  • Mobile banking – check account balances, pay bills on the go and keep tabs on your partner’s spending
  • Joint saving
    • A couple can link their Orange Everyday account with an ING DIRECT Savings Maximiser and transfer money between the two accounts in real time
    • A couple could set up an Automatic Savings Plan from their Orange Everyday account (when a set amount is debited on a set date)
    • Linking the savings and transaction account is handy if a couple has a joint savings goal e.g. (wedding/house/holiday) and have joint expenses (rent/groceries/bills) as well.
    • Control – Both parties’ money is in the same bank and therefore easier to control and track

General benefits of an Orange Everyday account:

  • No account keeping fees and no minimum deposit
  • Any ATM in Australia Free – Just withdraw $200 or more to use any ATM in Australia Fee Free
  • Bonus 50c when you get $200+ cash out using Eftpos
  • Easy to set up and manage online 
  • Mobile banking for iphone and Android apps
  • Low international withdrawal fees

Media contact:

Caroline Thomas
+61 2 9018 5160
+61 413 317 225


ING DIRECT pioneered branchless banking in Australia by offering the first online, high interest, fee free savings account. Our low cost operating model allows us to pass these savings on to the customer in the form of great value products and services. Today, ING DIRECT has more than 1.4 million customers with $26 billion in deposits and $38 billion in mortgages and a range of innovative banking products.

Please note ING DIRECT is never abbreviated to ING.

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