- 51% of Americans with $100K or more in annual income live paycheck to paycheck
- 62.7% of Black households have less than $6,275 saved
Many believe earning a six-figure income means that you have arrived and are at the epitome of success. However, as of December 2022, 51% of Americans with $100,000 or more in annual income said they lived paycheck to paycheck, according to the LendingClub and Pymnts.com survey. Although many factors may contribute to this, the effects of inflation are burning holes into the pockets of too many Americans, causing them to live on an earn-and-spend treadmill.
Why This Matters: The eroding value of savings and the inability to save are some direct results of inflation. Specifically, 62.7% of Black households have less than $6,275 saved. Practicing effective money management principles is a challenge under the best of circumstances, but when added to the equation the financial strain of making everyday purchases like groceries and gasoline, it becomes painfully obvious that the diminished value of paychecks makes it harder for Americans to achieve financial stability and build wealth.
Inflation is a major source of pressure on U.S. households. Overall, prices rose 6.5% in December, while the cost of groceries jumped nearly 12%, according to the Consumer Price Index. The services index, which includes housing, transportation, and medical care, rose 7% compared to last year. Despite some improvements in inflation, many Americans have a pessimistic view of the economy. Just 4 out of 10 Americans who admitted living paycheck to paycheck expect their incomes to keep pace with inflation this year.
Situational Awareness: It’s prudent for Americans to not only be concerned about their finances but also consider that a recession could be lurking in the not-too-distant future. Therefore, it’s important to get one’s personal financial affairs in order to help navigate the time we’re living in and the more turbulent times that may lie ahead. Start by taking control of your spending, maintaining a positive cash flow, increasing savings, establishing an emergency fund, building assets, and decreasing debt. The reality is that it’s not how much you earn; it’s how much you keep that matters in pursuing financial stability and wealth creation.
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