Overall financial situation

Financial Security Index survey chart

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Compared to 12 months ago, do you feel your overall financial situation is:

  • Thirty-seven percent of those younger than 30 say their overall situations are better today than last year. Only 15 percent of those approaching retirement (50 to 64) feel likewise.
  • Twenty percent of those with high school or less education feel they're better off today than last year, while 30 percent feel worse off.
  • Among low earners (less than $30,000), 21 percent feel better off while 35 percent feel their overall finances are worse.

Economically, the past year did not live up to what many had expected or hoped for.

David E. Munn, CFP

Munn Wealth Management in Maumee, Ohio

Many individuals' feelings about their situation have a negative bias, whether their finances improved or not over the last 12 months. Economically, the past year did not live up to what many had expected or hoped for. That disappointment, along with media reporting, translates into a pessimistic outlook for the future. Consequently, even if a family has maintained employment, steady wages and net worth levels, the persistent uncertainty about the economy, employment and stock market, as well as unmet personal goals and expectations, make it difficult to feel good about any baby steps that may have been taken. Of course, many families have lost ground financially over the past year due to unemployment or benefit reductions. Individuals who are working again after experiencing a job loss may still be struggling to adjust to a lower income as they attempt to maintain a previous standard of living or remain handcuffed by a mortgage or previous debt.

Financial fix-its

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