By Jim Donovan

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Approximately 12 million Americans have concealed a bank or credit card account from their live-in spouse, partner or significant other, that’s according to a new survey.

“Keeping secrets in your relationships is never a good idea,” said Matt Schulz, senior industry analyst at “Like any indiscretion, what starts out small tends to build. Spending $25 without consulting your partner may seem incidental, but when those purchases become more frequent or if the amount grows, it can wreak havoc on your accounts and your budget.”

Age appears to be a factor in financial infidelity wherein older baby boomers (11 percent), those ages 63-71, are nearly four times as likely as millennials to have had a secret account (3 percent).

Regardless of the potential financial risk, some Americans don’t appear discouraged from making large purchases on their own. More than 1 in 4 of respondents (28 percent) have admitted to spending $500 or more without consulting their partner. Baby Boomers (39 percent) are nearly twice as likely to spend this amount compared to millennials (20 percent).

Americans seem to be all right with their partner spending large amounts of money without their consent. One-third (33 percent) of respondents think it is fine for their significant other to spend $500 or more without asking. This was the most popular answer. Males, Republicans and those with an income of over $75,000 were most likely to feel this way.

Spending large amounts without a prior discussion is not all right with everyone. Twenty percent of Americans report spending less than $25 without first speaking with their partner. Parents (29 percent) were nearly twice as likely to state this compared to non-parents (15 percent).

To see the full results of the survey, go to: