Sentiment towards saving declined last month as people were increasingly discouraged by the economy and Government policy, according to the latest Nationwide UK (Ireland) / ESRI Savings Index.

The monthly index declined to 95 points last month – its lowest point since February.

More than 40% of those surveyed felt the economic situation had worsened for savers, while just a quarter felt now was a good time to save.

Meanwhile, 65% of respondents felt Government policy was discouraging savers – an increase of 8% on the previous month.

Despite this the proportion of people saving regularly was up on a monthly and annual basis, standing at 35%.

Slightly more people were also happy with the amount they were saving, according to the survey.

More than half of those asked said they saved at least €100 per month.