Thirteen million American cheat on their spouses or live-in partners, not physically, but financially. According to a new survey from CreditCards.com, one in 20 people have either a credit card or a bank account that their spouse doesn't know anything about.
Fights over secret money seem to pop up all the time among business and entertainment celebrities. Last week, for example, former Apple CEO John Scully was sued by his ex-wife of 32 year who claims he was hiding $25 million in assets when they divorced. But what's interesting about the CreditCards/com survey, is that financial infidelity occurs at every income level.
According to the survey, forty-one percent of people have spent over $100 without their spouse's knowledge and 19 percent have spent more than $500. Men are more likely than women to cheat, according to the survey, which showed men are almost twice as likely as women to have spent more than $500 without alerting a spouse or a partner.
The middle class is most forgiving. Of all the income groups, they were most approving of a spouse or partner spending money without notifying the other. Just 24 percent of respondents in the survey said it is okay for a spouse to secretly spend $500.
Of course, it's easier than ever to pull off keeping an account secret with banks pushing consumers to drop the paper statements and receive monthly statements to their email inbox. Two income families are more likely to have separate accounts than families with a single income and that makes it less likely that information about spending is shared.