Friends With Money #16: How COVID-19 has changed the way Aussies spend and save


Australians took charge of their financial habits during coronavirus lockdowns in 2020.

They became more frugal, increased their savings and paid down debt, according to new research from the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA).

Those who didn't make those changes said some basic financial planning could have helped put them in a better position, including building up savings earlier, cutting out non-essential spending, and paying off debt more quickly.

friends with money podcast covid and money

To mark Financial Planning Week, which kicked off on October 4, the FPA is unveiling more of its research, including how Aussies felt about their money in 2020, and how the coronavirus crisis has changed their approach to money.

In this episode of the Friends With Money podcast, managing editor Julia Newbould is joined by FPA chief executive Dante De Gori, to talk about the importance of financial planning, why we need access to credible information, and why he's optimistic about the spending habits of everyday Aussies.

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Julia Newbould was editor-at-large and later managing editor of Money from November 2019 to February 2022. She was previously editor of Financial Planning and Super Review magazines; managing editor at InvestorInfo and at Morningstar Australia. Julia co-authored The Joy of Money, a book on women and personal finance. She holds a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Sydney where she serves on the alumni council.

Dante de Gori is the CEO of the Financial Planning Association. He has a Bachelor of Commerce (majoring in Finance) from the University of Wollongong, a Graduate Certificate in Politics and Policy from Deakin University, a Diploma in Financial Planning from FPA, and has recently completed a Graduate Certificate in Law (ANU) and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.