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July 2014 Financial Security Index charts

Bankrate's monthly survey measures how secure Americans feel about their personal finances compared with 12 months ago. From July 2-6, telephone interviews (on landlines and cellphones) with 1,000 adults living in the continental U.S. were conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. The results of Bankrate's Financial Security Index have a margin of error of plus or minus 3.6 percentage points. This month, the index dropped to 100.1 from 101.5 in June.

For money you wouldn't need for more than 10 years, which of the following would be the best way to invest the money?

Highlights:

  • Only 14% of retirees picked real estate as their top 10-year investment, compared with 25% of people who were still in the workforce.
  • Cash was a top pick of 29% of Southerners, compared with 21% of people from the Midwest or West.
  • The youngest age group, those between 18 and 29, favored cash above all other investment choices.
  • How do you feel about your job security compared with 12 months ago?

    Highlights:

    • 30% of Democrats felt more comfortable with their job security, compared with 15% of Republicans.
    • 22% of people 65 and older felt less secure, compared with 6% of those between 18 and 29.
    • Among people identifying as "black, non-Hispanic," 37% said they felt more secure today compared with 20% of those identifying as "white, non-Hispanic."
    How do you feel about the amount of money you have in savings compared with 12 months ago?

    Highlights:

    • 25% of college graduates felt more comfortable with their savings, compared with 11% of those who never attended college.
    • 22% of Democrats said they felt more comfortable, compared with 12% of Republicans.
    • 39% of people between 50 and 64 years old said they felt less comfortable, compared with 28% of people between 18 and 29 years old.
    How do you feel about the amount of debt you have compared with 12 months ago?

    Highlights:

    • 27% of those between 18 and 29 felt less comfortable with their debt, compared with 16% of those 65 and older.
    • 32% of college grads felt more comfortable with their debt, compared with 19% of those with a high school diploma or less.
    • 29% of those living in urban environments felt more comfortable with their debt, compared with 20% of those in rural communities.
    Please think about your net worth, or your total assets, including any real estate equity, minus your debts. Compared with 12 months ago, is your net worth:

    Highlights:

    • 23% of those who were unemployed said their net worth is lower, compared with 17% of people who had jobs.
    • 24% of people who live in the West said their net worth is lower, compared with 15% of those who live in the Midwest.
    • 33% of Democrats said their net worth was higher, compared with 18% of Republicans.
    Compared with 12 months ago, do you feel your overall financial situation is:

    Highlights:

    • 41% of people between the ages of 18 and 29 said their financial situation was better, compared with 14% of people 65 and older.
    • 32% of those living in urban areas said their overall situation was better, compared with 21% of those in rural communities.
    • 35% of people with full-time jobs said their overall situation was better, compared with 16% of retirees.

    Editor's note: Percentages may not equal 100, due to rounding.

    Financial Security Index

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