The Financial Planning Association of Australia The Financial Planning Association of Australia

Parents lie and borrow money from their kids

“New research reveals four money-parent personalities”

New research released by the Financial Planning Association (FPA) of Australia confirms frequent money talks help raise financially savvy kids. It also shows 38% of Australian parents have borrowed money from their child’s piggy bank or bank account for urgent expenses, and 29% admit to lying to their children about money.

The findings are part of the FPA Share the Dream: Raising the Invisible-Money Generation national research report into Australian parents of 4-18 year old children who are born after the year 2000 into a world of mostly online transactions, or “invisible-money”.

Four distinct money-parent personalities emerged from the FPA research, based on the frequency and comfort level parents have in talking about money with their children:

  • ENGAGERS (30%) find money talk easy and have frequent conversations with their children about money. They are most likely to seek the advice of a financial planner (39% compared to 33% for the overall group); and are most generous when it comes to pocket money. The majority (60%) of Engagers’ children know how much one or all of the adults in their household earns, and are notably curious to learn about invisible-money matters like Afterpay and in-game purchases.
  • TROOPERS (19%) also frequently talk money with their kids, but they feel anxious about it. Their teenage children (aged 14 to 18) are more likely to have a job than the average child[1], and have more experience making online transactions.
  • RELAXED (22%) parents are comfortable with money talk, but don’t do so very often. They are more likely to be older parents, and have the lowest levels of financial stress and regret in their household.
  • AVOIDERS (29%) put off money talk altogether. As a household, they tend to earn less and give less pocket money. Their children are least likely to transact in today’s invisible-money world of making online and phone-based purchases.

A quiz is available on for parents to find “Which Money-Parent Personality” they may be compared to the national data which was first released by the FPA to mark Financial Planning Week (20-26 August 2018).

The full Share the Dream research report — including more detailed descriptions of the four “money-parent personalities” — is available from the same website.

“Engagers and Troopers show us the earlier you start talking about money with kids the better,” observes FPA CEO, Dante De Gori CFP®. “I’m obviously pleased to see that parents most confident in talking about money are those most likely to have sought the advice of a financial planner at some point — it’s a  satisfying testament to our profession,” he says.

Parents, carers, grandparents or anyone involved in raising the Invisible-Money Generation is invited to download the Share the Dream eBook for interviews, tips and insights from a range of experts and a young entrepreneur about how to make money talk with kids easy and honest.

[1] The Share the Dream FPA data also revealed teens with a job are more prepared for the future. They show a greater interest in learning about taxes (3x greater) than those w22ithout a job, and superannuation (5x greater) than those who do not have a job.