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Financial education ranks top for Egyptians

Cairo, January 3, 2012

Around 97 per cent of Egyptians believe that financial education is paramount to a successful life, while nearly all of them also agree that it should be implemented in schools, according to a recent survey.

Visa recently ran two consumer surveys to gauge Egyptians’ perceptions of payment cards, spending habits and access to financial education.

The first was an online Omnibus survey (by YouGOV) which polled 767 Egyptians split between men (51 per cent) and women (49 per cent) of all income levels and from different geographic areas, 63 per cent of which live in Cairo.

The second survey was conducted by Synovate North Africa, which reached out to 1,141 residents of Cairo and Alexandria, split equally between men and women who own electronic payment cards.

According to the online Omnibus survey, only 33 per cent of respondents claim to adhere to a set monthly budget, whereas 27 per cent adhere to a budget on most occasions.

Forty-one per cent of budget-conscious respondents who adhered to a monthly budget said they tracked their expenses on their own or with the help of a bank; while 31 per cent claimed to use the help of a spouse or family member to manage their funds.

“At Visa we believe the most important financial tool is not a product. It is knowledge,” said Tarek Elhousseiny, general manager for Visa North and West Africa.

“For more than a decade now, Visa has been dedicated to developing financial literacy programs globally. These are set to raise awareness on   how to spend, save and budget responsibly.  In Egypt we face the challenge of a largely unbanked population, so showcasing the benefits of financial inclusion and financial education is crucial.”

The online survey also revealed that 70 per cent of regular income earners claim to be financially independent, while 25 per cent partially depend on other family members for financial assistance.

The most popular response to questions about individuals’ financial goals was ‘starting my own business.’

The younger demographic (18-29) cited their main financial goals as their own education and marriage, while the older group showed focus on providing for their families and purchasing their own home.

When asked about the differences between fixed and fluctuating expenses, 42 per cent considered dining out and entertainment (39 per cent) fixed expenses.  Interestingly, the majority of respondents considered all expenses as fixed.

Visa has also launched a website called My Money Skills in Arabic (ehsib.com), which offers quick tips on spending, saving, credit and debit alongside interactive quizzes and games as well as providing fundamental personal finance information in both Arabic and English. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Egypt | Synovate | Cairo | Visa | Survey | YouGov | Financial education |

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