Rainy days

An audit of household wealth and the initial effects of the coronavirus crisis on saving and spending in Great Britain

Families in Great Britain are faced with the most severe economic contraction in more than 100 years. Much of the immediate focus among policy makers has been on the size and distribution of falls in families’ incomes but household wealth, both savings and debt, will play a hugely important role in shaping how far families’ living standards will fall during the crisis.


This report is the first in a series of comprehensive, annual reports covering the state of wealth in Britain. In it we focus on the scale and distribution of families’ assets and debt prior to the coronavirus crisis and what that means for living standards. The report also presents evidence from a new survey on how families’ balance sheets have been affected in the early phase of the crisis. The crisis is disproportionately affecting families on low-to-middle incomes and this has profound implications for policy makers.