If you're hiding a bank or credit card account from your spouse, you're not alone

About 13 million Americans have hidden a checking, savings or credit-card account from live-in partners.
About 13 million Americans have hidden a checking, savings or credit-card account from live-in partners.PHOTO: ST FILE

SEATTLE (BLOOMBERG) - Forget Switzerland. The new secret account is the one you hide from your spouse.

About 13 million Americans have squirreled away a checking, savings or credit-card account from live-in partners, according to a study released on Wednesday (Feb 3) by CreditCards.com. A slightly greater share of women (about 6 per cent) than men (5 per cent) said they have kept money out of sight, a difference within the margin of error.

But another trend was more pronounced: Young people were more likely than their elders to keep secrets - or at least to admit it when a stranger calls to conduct a survey.

"It's possible that millennials are just more comfortable with disclosing that sort of thing in that environment," said Mr Matt Schulz, senior industry analyst at CreditCards.com, an online credit-card marketplace affiliated with Bankrate Inc.

He said he was surprised by the number of Americans who hide accounts, especially because it "can cause some real damage in a relationship". Not to mention their finances. "There's no way to do a meaningful budget if you don't know exactly what's coming in and what's going out," Mr Schulz said.

The survey was conducted for CreditCards.com from Jan 7 to 10 via telephone by Princeton Survey Research Associates International and includes 1,003 people in the continental United States.