Two thirds of parents (61%) say wages barely cover monthly expenses, survey finds

Two Thirds Of Parents (61%) Say Wages Barely Cover Monthly Expenses, Survey Finds
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James Cox

Almost four in 10 (39 per cent) of adults in Ireland believe that their financial situation has worsened in the last year and a quarter (25 per cent) believe that their finances will get worse in 2024, according to new research.

Penneys has published its latest Pulse of the Nation Index, conducted in partnership with Amárach Research, a consumer-focused report that "highlights the disproportionately negative impact that people’s financial situation has on their quality of life".


The cost-of-living crisis continues to weigh heavily on the mood of Irish public – hence Ireland’s ‘vibecession'.

The report said this means that while there’s an improved economic outlook, the public mood doesn’t match up. Consumers remain cautious with their money, with the majority (84 per cent) of adults stating that they are still actively shopping around to find the best value.

Following the first Pulse of the Nation Index which found that families are one of the most impacted groups of the cost-of-living crisis.

Two-thirds (61 per cent) of parents admit their wages just about cover their monthly expenses (rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries, etc) and crippling childcare costs, with little or nothing left over for family fun, and 65 per cent of working mothers reportedly admit holding off on career promotion opportunities due to their kids.

Almost three quarters of parents (73 per cent) are switching to a more affordable grocery retailer compared to the national average (62 per cent).

Other key findings of the research include:

  • Almost nine in ten (86 per cent) members of the public took steps to manage their energy bills last winter.
  • 71 per cent of adults are eating out or getting takeaways less.
  • Almost half of households (47 per cent) have cancelled an entertainment subscription.
  • Almost two thirds (62 per cent) of shoppers have switched to a more affordable grocery retailer.
  • 68 per cent of the general public are treating themselves less and a similar amount (69 per cent) are socialising less in a bid to better manage their household finances.

Penneys’ customer sales insights have reinforced the research findings, as the retailer has "seen how shoppers are continuing to wear warming clothing in a bid to keep energy bills under control".

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