1. Half Living Paycheck to Paycheck

    Fresh new survey data from Allstate’s “Life Tracks” unit suggests that about half of Americans have nothing left over after paying for essentials:

    Allstate: Americans Struggle to Save Despite Optimism

    I find it interesting that this “half of us live paycheck-to-paycheck” stat keeps reappearing in survey after survey in recent years. I’m thinking the figures are pretty valid, at this point.

    In the Allstate survey, conducted in December of 2012, 32 percent of college grads reported living paycheck-to-paycheck, while 48 percent of non-graduates reported the same.

    For those curious about credit-card debt, there were some interesting nuggets in that arena, too. From the article:

    • Forty-nine percent say they pay credit card debt; 43 percent mortgage payments; 36 percent car payments; 17 percent student loan payments; and 15 percent medical debts.
    • Among the half (51 percent) of Americans expecting a tax return, 45 percent intend to pay off debt with the money.
    • Sixty-five percent of Americans with credit card debt say their level of debt has increased or remained the same in the past year.
    • While a majority say their savings remains about the same (about 60 percent) in the past year, just 15 percent of Americans say their short-term emergency savings has increased, and 14 percent say their long-term savings and investment activity has increased.

    The fact that 65 percent said their debt levels have stayed the same or increased in the last year isn’t a surprise, given that 40 percent of respondents were “very confident about their ability to pay for a new car.” (That was in the survey, too.)

    What’s implied, of course, is that they’re confident in their ability to borrow for a new car.

    Debt, after all, makes the world go ’round.

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  2. 1 Response to "Half Living Paycheck to Paycheck" ...

    1. On February 15, 2013 @ 8:09 am,
      Lynn Telford-Sahl wrote:

      As a recovering money “innocent”, one who was determined to stay oblivious to the boring side of life – paying bills, saving money the life shifting moment came when I began to understand I had a mostly unconscious relationship with money that was planted within by my parents. Thankfully my grandparents who were frugal, savers and investors also were in the background, much later to be discovered and mined for “how-to” guidelines.
      This relationship we all have with money is an emotional one and as research shows most of our decisions about money are more emotionally based than logical. (Though we hate to admit that.)

      Lots of great info here from a nuts and bolts standpoint. Also know that our relationship with money is more emotional/psychological than logical and research shows that most money decisions are emotionally based.



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