The majority of British people are ignoring the investment potential of their money, according to a survey of 6,160 adults.
Almost seven in 10 UK residents (68 per cent) do not have their money invested in any kind of asset, including stocks, shares, bonds, commodities or property both at home and overseas.
By contrast, people in Hong Kong, Singapore and the UAE are far more active, with an average of 70 per cent placing their money in some kind of investment asset.
While 20 per cent of UK consumers have invested in stocks, shares or bonds, only 11 per cent are investing in the UK property market.
Out of 6,160 adults polled in January just 2 per cent of investors are putting their money in property overseas, despite many cities offering strong and consistent price growth in 2015, including Melbourne (11 per cent) and Berlin (18.5 per cent).
David Bellingham, director and head of UK and Europe for IP Global, said: “There are a number of reasons why British people have a more passive attitude to investing.
“Culturally, financial planning for the future is not something the average person takes ownership of, choosing instead to keep their cash in low-interest savings accounts. A lack of knowledge and misinformation around how difficult it is to invest is another key barrier.
“When it comes to investing in property for example, a lot of our UK clients are overwhelmed by what they perceive as the complexity involved. This includes tax considerations, transaction costs and managing tenants, when in reality these elements are often very straightforward.”
Marlene Outrim, managing director of Uniq Family Wealth, said: “When stock markets are volatile, Brits are reluctant to invest their money, mainly because these fluctuations amply demonstrate the risks that they will be taking although the view not to invest is not usually a rational one.
“If invested in a balanced portfolio aligned to their level of risk and the amount of loss they can accept, investing over a period of time, then they should be investing whilst markets are low.
“Typically we often get people wanting to put money in when markets are high, since they believe there is more stability.”