Almost 80 percent of bank customers expect the economic situation in Poland to worsen and many of them claim that due to the current conditions they have reduced their expenses. More than half of the respondents plan to save more – according to the latest research conducted by IBRiS on behalf of the BFF Banking Group.
BFF Bank and its Polish branch, together with the Institute for Market and Social Research IBRiS, carried out a study aimed at understanding the needs of bank customers at a time of increased uncertainty – after two years of fighting the pandemic and during the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Expect the economic situation in Poland to worsen
The results show that almost 80 percent of the respondents expect the economic situation in Poland to worsen. Due to this, 66 percent of the respondents limited greater expenses, and 45 percent current consumption and basic expenses. A higher percentage of people who indicate that they did not reduce larger expenses is observed among men (40- and 60-year-olds), respondents with higher education levels, and among people with an income in the range of PLN 3,000-5,000 per person.
Nearly 60 percent among the respondents claim that due to the current political and economic situation, they intend to save more . The inhabitants of the largest Polish cities and the youngest respondents (under 30) plan to increase their savings. On the other hand, respondents aged 50-69 most often say that they do not intend to do so.
As shown by the results of the conducted analysis, there are several ways of investing savings, which, in the opinion of individual bank customers, are currently the safest. In their opinion, the safest form of saving is real estate investment (this was indicated by 57% of the respondents). Gold was second (35% of responses), while term deposits were third (20% of respondents). Bank deposits were rated higher than investments in foreign currencies (16%) and treasury bonds (13%), which until recently were considered one of the safest ways to invest.
In the case of deposits, the matter is not easy, because banks do not pamper their savers despite interest rate increases. The average interest rate on new deposits opened in March by households totaled 1.5%. per year compared to 1.2 percent. in February. The data of the National Bank of Poland show that before the rate hikes it was around 0.2 percent. This is not much taking into account that the NBP reference rate rose from 0.1% from October to March up to 3.5 percent
Expect interest rate hikes to increase
Half of individual clients of banks operating in Poland expect interest rate hikes to increase interest rates on deposits. The question is, however, to what extent and to what level the deposit rates will increase. Let us recall that from October 2021 to now, the NBP reference rate has increased to 5.25 percent. with 0.1 percent
The study commissioned by the BFF Banking Group shows that there are three most important factors that determine the choice of a specific deposit offer by bank customers. The most important of them is, of course, the interest rate on the deposit, indicated by 65 percent. of the respondents, then the duration of the deposit (the maturity date preferred by customers is one year), while the bank’s brand was ranked third.