Britons may be big spenders but they are also surprisingly secretive about their outgoings, Halifax Home Insurance has revealed.
A quarter of Britons admitted they have been economical with the truth about the cost of a purchase this last year, shying away from confessing the real cost to family or partners.
By misrepresenting the real cost of the items they had bought by an average of £772, Britons have collectively failed to account for £6.5 billion in spending, the study showed.
More than half of the people who concealed the truth did so because they didn't want to be seen as frivolous spenders, while others were afraid of their partners' reaction.
Women were the most likely to lie about the cost of clothes, with 80 per cent concealing the truth about their togs, while men were most often tempted to bend the truth about the cost of a Playstation or iPod.
In what has been hailed as an intervention to help cultivate Britons' saving habit, Treasury minister Ed Balls this week announced an initiative in which the government will make starter contributions to selected savings accounts.
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