More than a quarter of Russians do not understand loans and borrowings
More than a quarter of Russians find it difficult to figure out how to use borrowed funds, as evidenced by the results of a nationwide survey of the NAFI analytical center. 18% of respondents have difficulties with loans and another 10% with microloans. And the most difficult to understand financial services are investment: about 41% of respondents believe that they are the most difficult to understand. Insurance, bank deposits and deposits, as well as bank cards can be called the services most understandable to the population: only 8%, 7% and 4% of respondents noted difficulties with them, respectively.
The survey was held in October 2016, 1,600 people took part in it in 140 settlements in 42 regions of Russia. The age of the study participants is 18 years and older. A third of Russians admit that there are many financial services that are difficult for a layperson to understand. The older the respondents, the more often they express such an opinion (24-27% in the group of 18-34 year olds versus 33% of the respondents 45-59 years old and 46% among pensioners), according to the study. At the same time, up to 38% of survey participants believe that many financial services can be dealt with on their own. Only about a quarter of Russians (23%) believe that most financial services on the market are understandable. This is mainly answered by 25-34-year-olds (27%) and those surveyed with higher education (29%).
Financial markets are developing rapidly, both on the part of the product offer and technology, said Guzeliya Imaeva, director general of the NAFI analytical center. “It is obviously difficult for an ordinary person to keep pace with the changes taking place. To avoid this imbalance, financial market players need to rethink the principles of relationships with consumers. “Simplify and train!” – this is the formula that can fundamentally change the quality of relationships with current and potential customers, ”she explains.
The low level of financial literacy is a serious problem for Russians and often leads to sad consequences, explained Forbes board member, head of the Retail Business block of Alfa-Bank Mikhail Povaliy. “This is a high degree of debt, the growth of fraudulent schemes against bank customers, the placement of savings in dubious financial institutions and much more,” said Povaliy. According to him, in order for clients to treat their financial decisions correctly, the bank launched a cycle of free training seminars for clients, they are attended by a different audience – from youth to retirees.
Improving the financial literacy of the population is also one of the important areas of the company’s work, a representative of Sberbank said. In particular, Sberbank, together with the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, organizes special training webinars for schoolchildren, and also holds seminars for entrepreneurs on the basis of business development centers. In addition, a step-by-step development program for entrepreneurs “Business Class” was launched – a joint project of Sberbank and Google. Sberbank also conducts training of the audience of social networks on the basics of financial security.
The Ministry of Finance was concerned about the problem of financial literacy of the population. “The issues of protecting savings are relevant for Russians: every year citizens lose hundreds of millions of rubles from bank cards, fall into the tricks of scammers, suffer from unfair behavior of participants in the financial market,” the ministry explained. Therefore, the Ministry of Finance has a separate project that should help fix this. In November, the ministry held the All-Russian Savings Week, devoted specifically to protection against fraud and the rules of competent financial behavior and accumulation of funds, and also launched the federal financial literacy portal Vashifinansy.rf.