money finance vocabulary ielts

In order to achieve a high score on the IELTS examination, a wide range of vocabulary is essential. You do not have to use complicated words, but being able to use more specific professional terms accurately when discussing finance and money will stand you in good stead when it comes to the IELTS speaking and writing sections. The money and finance vocabulary has been split into different sections and there are some exercises for you to practice using the words in context.

1. Vocabulary for Giving, Receiving and Using Money

  • Bill – An amount of money owed for goods or services. For example, a hotel bill or a gas bill
  • Expenditure – The action of spending money
  • Expense – The cost required for something
  • Fee – A payment made for something. Usually services rather than products. For example, legal fees, and hospital fees.
  • Income – Money received either from work or investments
  • Making a payment – The process of paying for something
  • Mortgage – A legal agreement where a creditor lends money to help people buy property. The money is paid back in instalments and with interest.
  • Passive income – Money received from investments. Typical work is not required for passive income
  • Make a profit – The financial gain remaining after the cost of producing or selling something is subtracted from income/revenue
  • Make a loss – When the cost of producing/selling something is more than the cost received for selling it
  • Revenue – The money/income received by a business or company for the sale of goods or provision or a service
  • Salary – A regular payment made from an employer to an employee
  • To allocate / allocation – To assign or distribute money for a specific purpose
  • To borrow – To take money from a person or company with the intention of paying it back later.
  • To earn – To engage in a work-related activity that leads to obtaining money.
  • To invest – Spend money with the expectation of making a profit. For example, investing in the stock market
  • To lend – To give someone money on the condition it will be returned
  • To pay back – To repay a loan
  • To pay off – To pay a debt
  • To spend – To pay money for goods or services
  • To save up / set aside – To accumulate money over time to be used for a specific purpose
  • To waste – To use money carelessly, inefficiently, or extravagantly
  • To withdraw – To remove money from a bank account
  • Wages – A regular payment from an employer to an employee

IELTS writing correction

2. Financial Vocabulary Activity 1


Exercise 1
Here is a sample answer to an IELTS speaking question. Read through the answer and then complete the exercise by choosing the correct word to complete the sentences.

Have you bought anything interesting recently?

Yes, last month I bought a new house which was quite a large expenditure. I have taken out a 20-year mortgage so I will be paying it off until I am 62.


1. I haven’t bought anything that interesting recently because 6 months ago I had to pay a huge hospital for the surgery on a broken foot.

2. I haven’t necessarily bought anything, but I have some spare cash in the stock market. Eventually, I hope to give up my conventional job and live off my .

3. My business made a last year so completely paid off the on my house. Then with what was leftover, I raised the of my employees by 10%.

Are you good at saving money?

1. I am not that great at saving money because I tend to it on things I don’t really need like new clothes, restaurant food, and coffee.

2. Yes I am quite good at saving money because I a specific amount each week that I can on recreation. Once that has finished I don’t touch the rest of my salary because I am to buy a new apartment.

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  • Afford – Have enough money to pay for something
  • Bargain – Something that costs less than its normal market value
  • Broke/ Penniless – To have little or no money
  • Cost of living – The amount of money it costs to pay life’s expenditures. For example, food, rent, transport etc…
  • Credit – The ability to obtain goods or services without paying for them immediately.
  • Deflation – A general reduction in prices within the economy
  • Discount – A reduction from the usual cost of something
  • Extravagant – lacking restraint in spending money or something that costs too much money
  • Frugal – To use money in a simple, economical, or efficient way
  • Funds/ Funding – The amount of money available for a specific purpose
  • Inflation – A general increase in prices and drop in the purchasing power of money
  • Overpriced – Something being sold for more than it should cost
  • Poor – Lacking the money to live comfortably
  • Priceless – Something that is so special or unique it is difficult to assign a price
  • Refund – Money returned for returned goods or unsatisfactory service
  • Tight/Stingy – To dislike spending money, especially on other people
  • Wealth distribution – How money is spread between the different parts of society
  • Wealthy – Having plenty of resources or money
  • Worthless – Having no real value or use

4. Money and Financial Vocabulary Activity 2


Exercise 2
Choose the correct word to complete the IELTS speaking question.
What problems does money cause in your society?

I think that money and unequal is one of the greatest problems in my society. I live in a country where are amongst the lowest in the world and this disparity causes resentment between socio-economic groups. The can to waste as much money as they like on unnecessary things like fancy meals and holidays, whereas the majority of society has to be a little more and make sure they have enough to meet the basic .

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Collocations – Here are some important collocations that will help you discuss money and finance on the IELTS writing and speaking sections.

IELTS writing correction

  • Buy in bulk – To buy something in a large quantity in order to get a discount
  • Cash injection – An investment into a business, usually made in cash
  • Clear a debt – Finish paying off a debt
  • Financial aid – Money borrowed often to pay for school/university / Money sent by one country to another country
  • Financially dependent – To rely on someone else for money/survival
  • Financially independent – To not rely on anyone else money/survival
  • Government funding – Money from the government for a specific purpose. For example, government funding for sports facilities
  • Increase/Decrease funding – Raise or lower the amount of money available
  • Manage one’s finances – How a person controls their money
  • Private funding – Money that comes from individuals rather than banks or financial institutions
  • Put down a deposit – Make an initial payment to secure the future purchase of something
  • Run up a debt – To accumulate debt
  • Tight budget/Shoestring budget – A small amount of money to use for a specific purpose
  • To increase/boost funding – To make more money available for something
  • To reduce/cut funding – To make less money available for something

6. Collocations Vocabulary Activity 3

ex 3

Exercise 3

Choose the correct collocation to complete the sentences

1. It is difficult for students to become before they graduate and get a full time job.

2. The government do not provide enough money to run the local food charities, so they are forced to rely on from members of the public.

3. Since the prices of gas and oil have recently gone up, many families are having to operate on a

4. For certain products which you will always need, it is better to so that you can save a little. Even though the initial outlay is more, more is sometimes less!

5. Many students find it hard not to whilst at university, which they often spend years paying back.

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Vocab articles short lists

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