Johannesburg - South Africans should save their Christmas work bonuses rather than spend them on unnecessary luxuries during the holiday period, the SA Savings Institute (Sasi) said on Wednesday.
"Bonuses should be put to more productive [areas] such as pay-off debt or even a retirement savings plan," said Sasi chairperson Prem Govender.
"While it is justifiable to make merry, we want to remind consumers that the short-lived joy over the season might not be worth the suffering they are likely to go through if they do not plan [for] obligations awaiting in the New Year, especially at the beginning," she said.
According to Sasi, South Africans were barely saving and most households were in deep debt.
"The household debt [is] still soaring above 75% of household's disposable income."
The Consumer Financial Vulnerability Index indicated that consumers had experienced strain on their cash flow during the second quarter of the year.
"The index declined sharply from 58.9 points in the first quarter to 48.6 points in the second quarter," said Govender.
The National Credit Regulator claimed it was owed R1.36 trillion in the form of mortgages, vehicle finance, credit and clothing cards, personal loans, pension and insurance and pension-backed loans.