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Report: Millions admit to financial infidelity

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Posted at 11:15 AM, Feb 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-03 17:18:33-05

It's the financial equivalent of wiping lipstick off your collar.

Thirteen million Americans are throwing away their credit card receipts before they walk through their front door.

They have a name for it: financial infidelity. 

It's not because remembering what you ordered for lunch is so important, instead Americans are trying to hide a purchase from another family member, typically a spouse.

A new study shows 1 in 20 are cheaters, admitting they have (or had) a checking, savings account or credit card his or her live-in significant other does not know about.

The Creditcards.com report says 19 percent of those polled admitted to hiding a purchase that cost $500 or more. An even higher percentage--24 percent--said it was not important enough to tell their significant other about the purchase.

Seniors were the most honest with their partner, only 2 percent said they have a hidden account. But, seniors also had the tightest grip on their partner's budgets--24 percent of people polled said their partner should let them know if they spend $25 or more.

And if you thought women get a bad rap for secretly overspending?  The study showed men are almost twice as likely to have concealed a $500 or more purchase.  Matt Schulz, Senior Analyst with creditcards.com said honesty is the best fiscal policy.

"Avoiding secrets is key to a successful relationship," Matt Schulz said.  "It's important to be honest with your significant other about spending and finances. In the end, secret spending can lead to spiraling debt as well as a messy break up."