Self-doubt is preventing Australians from taking the required action to reach their financial goals, but there is also a link between lagging confidence and those who do not have a plan to save and invest.
Such was the finding from MLC's Q3 Wealth Sentiment Survey, which found self-doubt ranked as the second reason as to why Australians had not done enough to reach their goals (32 per cent), while not earning enough money ranked first (50 per cent).
These two factors ranked higher than being averse to risk or spending more than they earned.
Noting that only one-in-four respondents reported having a financial plan, general manager, corporate super, NAB, Lara Bourguignon, said it is not surprising that self-doubt about how to invest and save money would hinder Australians from reaching their financial goals.
"With so few people having a financial plan, we perhaps shouldn't be surprised that Australians doubt themselves and don't believe they have done enough to reach their wealth goals," she said.
When asked to define wealth, 33 per cent of respondents reported their definition as income, 29 per cent as lifestyle wealth, and 24 per cent net worth. The most important aspects of lifestyle wealth were being debt free, having enough for emergencies, and being able to fund desired lifestyles.
Only 11 per cent reported that they planned to sell the family home to fund retirement, indicating respondents did not factor their primary residence when calculating their wealth. If they included their family homes, Australians would have an additional $442,000 in wealth available for retirement, MLC said.
Forty per cent respondents said they could achieve their desired lifestyle on less than $100,000 a year.