Tuesday, October 6, 2015

No 'Rainy Day' Savings for Most Americans .... Game-Set-Match Time?

Have credit cards and ultra-expensive borrowings become the new way to 'save' for Americans?

Are We the People even worse about our spending habits than our reckless 'leaders' in government?

Don't we fully understand that living within our means is the absolute best way to go through life?

Most Americans have less than $1,000 in savings succinctly tells the story:

"Americans are living right on the edge — at least when it comes to financial planning.

Approximately 62% of Americans have less than $1,000 in their savings accounts and 21% don’t even have a savings account, according to a new survey of more than 5,000 adults conducted this month by Google Consumer Survey for personal finance website “It’s worrisome that such a large percentage of Americans have so little set aside in a savings account,” says Cameron Huddleston, a personal finance analyst for the site. “They likely don’t have cash reserves to cover an emergency and will have to rely on credit, friends and family, or even their retirement accounts to cover unexpected expenses.”. . .

Read: Most Americans say their children will be worse off.

In the latest survey, 29% said they have savings above $1,000 and, of those who do have money in their savings account, the most common balance is $10,000 or more (14%), followed by 5% of adults surveyed who have saved between $5,000 and just shy of $10,000; 10% say they have saved $1,000 to just shy of $5,000. Just 9% of people say they keep only enough money in their savings accounts to meet the minimum balance requirements and avoid fees. But minimum balance requirements can vary widely and be hard to meet for some consumers. They can vary anywhere between $300 a month and $1,500 a month at some major banks.

Some age groups are less likely to have savings than others. Some 31% of Generation X — who are roughly aged 35 to 54 for the purpose of this survey — while being older and presumably more experienced with money than their younger cohorts, actually report a savings account balance of zero, which is the highest percentage of all age groups. Around 29% of millennials — aged 18 to 34 — and 28% of baby boomers — aged 55 to 64 — said they have no money in their savings account. Baby boomers (17%) and seniors aged 65 and up (20%) have the most money saved of any age group while less than 10% of millennials and approximately 16% of Generation X have $10,000 or more saved."

Summing Up

Have too many of our fellow Americans given up on having a secure financial life, both for themselves and their children?

And if they have, will they use credit cards, student loans, home mortgages, car loans and other forms of debt to make the current huge problem an even bigger one down the road?

Are credit cards the new 'American way' of saving for a rainy day?

If so, then it's game-set-match, and ALL of We the People will be on the losing side.

That's my take.

Thanks. Bob.

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