New Finder data showed Australians were saving an average of $461 per month in February, which was less than half of the $953 per month people were saving 12 months earlier.
Sarah Megginson, Finder’s senior editor of money, pointed out that households were saving more money during the pandemic, which accounted for some of this difference.
However, she said a sharp drop-off in savings through February and March may represent “an early indication of rising inflation and interest rates digging into people’s pockets”.
High costs of living will be a major focus in the Federal Budget, which will be handed down tonight.
Housing stress also on the rise
The Finder data also showed 37 per cent of Australians admitted to struggling to afford their rent or home loan repayments in March.
This is the highest this figure has been since Finder launched its Consumer Sentiment Tracker in May 2019.
The Budget will contain more details about the scheme.
Soaring petrol prices also hurting Aussies
Fuel prices have also spiked above $2 a litre, leaving many motorists “dreading” a trip to the petrol station.
More details about the fuel tax cut will be revealed later today.