What is the history of savings pools?


For centuries, people have recognised the benefit of pooling their resources. Examples from the last century include co-operatives, buyers’ clubs, investment syndicates and the like.

Living Economies' approach to savings pool is a model adapted from the very successful Swedish JAK Bank, which has been providing its members with interest-free loans for over fifty years.

Savings pools in Aotearoa New Zealand

The Aotearoa New Zealand approach has been developed by Living Economies Educational Trust, following a visit by Board Trustee Bryan Innes to the JAK Bank. At first, Bryan called this approach the "Genuine Wealth System" to highlight one of the core value principles of savings pools, which is that people find wealth within community, not in a bank. For whatever reason, however, the name 'savings pools' is the one that's found a place in the media.

There are now successful savings pools all around New Zealand. Since 2009 people have paid off cars, loans, and credit cards. They've funded travel and made essential house modifications. They've even paid off mortgages!

Living Economies Educational Trust (LE) promotes exchange systems and investment models that build community strength and well-being, offer interest-free alternatives to 'business as usual', and respect both people and our living planet. Our network of volunteers can recommend resources and provide educational support for community initiatives. LE (CC 38114) is a registered educational charity, and we do not provide financial or legal advice.

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