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More in emergency savings than debt?



Intro: Hopefully you have more money in your emergency savings than you do in credit card debt. But you might be surprised for how many people the opposite is true. recently polled Americans on this, along with their feelings on other aspects of financial security, and here with details is Greg McBride, senior financial analyst for

Kristin: So what did find when asking Americans about how their emergency savings compares to their credit card debt?

Greg: Only a little more than half of Americans, 54% have more money in emergency savings than they do in credit card debt. One-in-four Americans has more credit card debt than emergency savings, with parents most likely to be in this camp. And 16% - about 1-in-6 Americans doesn't have either credit card debt or emergency savings, which means they're just one unplanned expense away from having credit card or other high cost debt.

Kristin: How do these results compare to last year?

Greg: The results were pretty similar to last year, though the needle did move slightly. We saw a slight uptick in both those having more in savings and those having more cc debt, but the percentage of those having neither fell from 19% to 16% since last year.

Kristin: How are Americans feeling about financial security in February?

Greg: Americans are feeling about the same as they were in January as the Financial Security Index was unchanged at 97.3%. But this is still the highest since June of last year. Consumers' feelings about their overall financial situation have improved for four months in a row, though sentiment is still negative, with more people saying it is worse than a year ago than saying it's better.

Tag: For more on's monthly consumer poll, visit our website,

« Back to February 2012 Financial Security Index.


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