Hindu, Sikh communities now Middle Britons

Britain`s Hindu and Sikh communities with high education levels, jobs and house ownership are increasingly likely to be classified as `Middle Britons`, wide-ranging research says.

Updated: Dec 14, 2010, 21:49 PM IST

London: Britain`s Hindu and Sikh
communities with high education levels, jobs and house
ownership are increasingly likely to be classified as `Middle
Britons`, wide-ranging research says.

It was found that `long-established` Hindu and Sikh
families now have an above average likelihood of being classed
`Middle Britons`.

They are now being categorised as part of the
country`s middle-class, according to a survey that also
revealed the changing societal lifestyles.

The surprising focus on Hindu and Sikh communities is
part of the lifestyle of a typical middle-class Briton
revealed in the research by credit rating company Experian,
the Daily Mail reported.

The researchers examined nationwide data ranging from
income and housing type to favourite internet sites and
shopping habits.

It identified over 400 social and economic factors to
define middle-class Britain and produced a detailed picture of
the country’s largest group, accounting for 13.1 million
people, or one in five of the population.

The middle class has an average annual household
income of 47,300 pounds, which is 10 per cent higher than the
national average.

However, the people who took part in the survey said
they were worried about meeting mortgage payments, rising
bills, reduced pension values and whether their children could
afford to get on to the housing ladder.

Less than a third said they were "financially
comfortable".

The middle class` expenditures were higher than the
national average because of increased income tax and mortgage
commitments.

Data about spending habits showed the average
household spent 610 pounds per week on bills and shopping,
with transport and groceries being the biggest expenditure.

The average middle class Briton is aged 36 to 45, and
40 per cent have children, compared to a national average of
28 per cent.

A majority own homes - 87 percent compared to the
national average of 67 percent.

Around 88.5 per cent have a garden in their home.
While just over half said they were happy with their
standard of living, 57 per cent said they struggled to find
enough time and juggled work and family life.

Middle class Britons are more likely to spend money on
computers, technology and other gadgets, including
high-definition television.

PTI