ldies. They make laws that disadvantage young people and then tell us off for not coping with it better.
“Generation Snowflake” was added to the Collins Dictionary a few months ago, with the definition “young adults . . . viewed as being less resilient than previous generations”. It’s a tension that I think of often when writing about how private student loan repayments can wipe tens of thousands off what you can get on a mortgage, or how interest on the loans is going up by a third in September, or how developers are building flats, but selling them in China first.
But that’s my job. Outside of these pages, millennials are just getting on with it. Sense of entitlement? Lacking resilience? Not when it comes to the rubbish lot the grey-haired brigade has left us with.
So I was intrigued to be offered research this week, which found that, far from the cliché of the disgruntled twentysomething, most millennials have accepted their situation philosophically. It came from the former pensions minister Steve Webb, who works for Royal London, a retirement company, which examined the attitudes of 5,000 people.
“I was struck by just how many millennials are simply pleased for their grandparents who are enjoying a decent standard of living, and they want their grandparents to enjoy their wealth,” he says. “The younger generation are not standing there with their hands out expecting or demanding an inheritance. Yes, they are frustrated by these inequalities, but they don’t generally hold it against their grandparents’ generation.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Good money management essentially means striking the right balance between living for today and postponing some enjoyment of your salary until later. Technology has made it much easier to spend, but for some people contactless payment cards may be a little too convenient. Research from YouGov, the polling company, and 118 118 Money, the lender, found that young people say they are spending more since getting contactless cards.
A friend admitted he disliked his contactless card — “it’s just too easy”. It’s also partly because bartenders often take your card and tap it somewhere behind the bar, without offering a receipt.
His solution was to call his bank and ask for a non-contactless card, which he says is helping him spend money more thoughtfully. I didn’t realise that rolling back to simpler times was an option.
For readers who like the idea, Barclays, Santander, HSBC, Lloyds, Halifax, First Direct and Bank of Scotland will all replace contactless cards on request.