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Don’t mess with the money: 4 million Australians say financial infidelity is worse than an affair

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Millions of Aussies consider financial infidelity to be the ultimate betrayal in their relationship, according to new research by Finder.

A nationally representative survey of 1,015 respondents revealed more than 1 in 5 (22%) Australians think financial infidelity is worse than their partner having an affair.

Gen Z (27%) are the most likely to admit they believe financial infidelity is worse than physical cheating, compared to 17% of Baby Boomers, 19% of Gen X and 26% of Millennials.

Kate Browne, personal finance expert at Finder, said being transparent about your finances with your partner can be considered equally as important as being faithful in a relationship, especially if your finances are combined.

"Financial infidelity can range from something as little as fibbing about purchasing a new item for your wardrobe right through to gambling large amounts of money.

"Financial cheating is up there with physical cheating and can have even more devastating consequences long term."

Finder's survey found men (23%) and women (21%) are almost evenly tied when it comes to thinking financial infidelity is worse than physical cheating.

Browne encourages Australians to be transparent about their finances with their partner from the outset.

"It's a good idea to check that your attitudes towards spending and saving are compatible early on. You don't want to get blindsided later down the track."

Finder research in August found 2 in 5 (40%) Australians – equivalent to more than 7 million people – were unaware of how much their partner was worth.

A survey by Relationships Australia revealed that the majority of respondents (male respondents – 64%, female respondents – 54%) considered that infidelity should not always result in the end of a relationship.

However, more than 10% of men and women thought infidelity should always result in a break-up.

The free Finder app can help you and your partner manage your day-to-day finances and enable you to stay on top of your spending habits.

Which do you think is worse in a relationship: financial infidelity or physically cheating?
Physically cheating (i.e. having an affair)78%
Financial infidelity (i.e. not being honest with your partner about income or spending)22%
Source: Finder survey of 1,015 respondents, October 2021

Thinking of opening a joint account with your partner? Here's what you should keep in mind.

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