Money Bite-Size Read:
- COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted young people financially.
- New research looks at the experience of 18 to 24 year olds across Australia.
- Here’s what you need to know about young people and money after COVID-19 and the impact of the pandemic so far.
The Money Bites Take:
COVID-19 has had an impact on young people’s study and employment pathways in Australia.
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been felt across society.
This includes young people in Australia. The majority have had their education disrupted or stopped, which then impacts their future employment options.
The pandemic lockdowns have also seen cafes and hospitality venues shut. These venues would have employed young people working part-time while studying, which compounds the impact on their finances.
The story on young people and money after COVID-19:
We know that the COVID-19 lockdowns disrupted study and work pathways for young people. The experiences of young people during COVID were covered in research released by the Foundation of Young Australians (FYA) on 30 July 2020.
So what did the research cover?
FYA’s research focused on young people in Australia aged between 18 to 24. The survey was undertaken between 22 June 2020 and 1 July 2021 and focused on how COVID-19 impacted young people.
Here’s what you need to know about young people and money after COVID-19:
1. Young people are the demographic most likely to have lost work
A third of young people surveyed have accessed government income support or wage subsidies. These schemes have been set up to support people whose income has been impacted by COVID.
2. More 18 to 24 year olds are experiencing bill stress
Nearly half of all young people surveyed were concerned about being able to pay their bills. This bill pressure was due to having their work hours reduced or from losing their jobs.
3. Young people are concerned about finding work
When it comes to job opportunities, 60% of young people have concerns about finding or changing jobs. That concern might be due to a lack of suitable job opportunities available after COVID-19.
4. Many young people have lost the stability of paid work
One in four young people surveyed had lost their job since the start of the pandemic. This signals a change in the number of jobs available to young people, thanks to COVID-19.
5. Young people are cutting back on expenses
With a change in their income, 66% of young people made lifestyle changes to cut back on their bills. Of those surveyed, 25% avoided medical appointments as they were concerned about being able to afford the bill, and 21% had moved to cheaper accommodation.
6. More 18 to 24 year olds are borrowing from their future funds
One in 5 young people have taken out loans, with 18% taking money out of their super account. There are downsides to withdrawing your super early, but some young people would benefit more from accessing this cash now.
7. Money is the biggest concern for young people
When sharing their fears for the future, a quarter of young people were most concerned about financial issues. A further 21% were most concerned about their income and job security, linked to their ability to earn money.
COVID-19 has negatively impacted young people’s finances.
This research by the Foundation of Young Australians helps capture that impact and highlights that money and earning money is a significant worry for many young people. However, by taking the time to learn more about money and assess their financial position, including accessing available income support, more young people can financially recover from the impact of the pandemic.