NEARLY a third of consumers are worried about their finances – but the better-off are less likely to have felt the pinch in the coronavirus crisis.

Those were among the findings of research carried out by Dorset-based retirement specialist LV=.

Research among 4,000 UK consumers found 31 per cent were worried about their finances.

However, those with assets of between £100,000 and £500,000 excluding property were less likely to have seen a decrease in income from employment, less likely to have been furloughed and more likely to have seen a fall in their monthly outgoings.

Part-time workers have been worst affected during the pandemic, with 40 per cent seeing their incomes fall, compared with 26 per cent of full-time employed people.

Clive Bolton, managing director of savings and retirement at County Gates-based LV=, said: “Coronavirus has been a huge shock and the lives and finances of millions of people have been disrupted. Our survey of the UK population’s financial confidence, health and attitudes to spending and saving reveals just how worried people are about the future.

“Although relatively well-off families have been able to save more as they remain in employment and their monthly outgoings have reduced, coronavirus is further polarising the personal finances of people in the UK and many people – particularly those who are self-employed or working part-time – have been hit much harder.

“The big challenge will come when furlough schemes come to an end and it is understandable that many people are saving more money into cash when the future is so uncertain.

“With the stock market volatility of the last few months and fears about impending job losses, it’s understandable that people are taking a safety-first approach and saving more into current accounts.

“However, saving too much into cash means you could miss out on future investment growth while cutting pension contributions can cause you to have less money in retirement. Talking to a financial adviser is a good idea before taking money out of investments or drawing an income from a pension.”

The research found 28 per cent if people had seen the value of their pensions fall. Six per cent of over-55s were considering early retirement, while four per cent were thinking of delaying retirement. Only eight per cent had increased their savings into a pension, while one in 10 had cut their pension contributions.