Welcome!

Symbian Authors: Jack Newton, Kevin Benedict, Matthew Lobas, Shelly Palmer, RealWire News Distribution

News Feed Item

Americans Struggle to Save Despite Optimism about Financial Situation

New Allstate Financial "Life Tracks" poll reveals divide in abilities to make ends meet

NORTHBROOK, Ill., Feb. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Just half (50 percent) of Americans say they have enough money left over at the end of the month after paying for essentials according to the new, second installment of Allstate Financial's "Life Tracks" poll. More than four in 10 (41 percent) are living paycheck-to-paycheck while another 8 percent say they don't earn enough each month to pay for essentials. In the late December 2012 survey, responses pointed to an overall lack of financial management skills and resources, but a strong desire to do a better job in 2013.

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please click http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/americans-struggle-to-save-despite-optimism-about-financial-situation-190782221.html

"This second Allstate Life Tracks Poll takes the pulse of Americans to measure the health of their personal financial situations," said Don Civgin, president and chief executive officer of Allstate Financial. "Too many Americans are faced with financial challenges today that lead to an unstable future. As financial services professionals, how we bridge that gap and bring greater awareness to the financial issues people are facing, is the true test of measurable success in our industry."

The Allstate Life Tracks Poll is intended to uncover attitudes and behaviors based on a respondent's "life track," or the major life events that individuals face at varying stages of life (see www.allstate.com/financial). The following represents the top findings from the survey on how Americans are managing their personal finances.

Divided we stand

The split between those with money left over after paying for expenses and those that don't is reinforced by findings from the poll. An even 50 percent of respondents feel their personal financial situation is "excellent" or "good," while another 50 percent say it is "fair" or "poor."

  • Men (53 percent excellent/good) are more enthusiastic about their finances than women (47 percent excellent/good).
  • Single parents (74 percent fair/poor) are notably the most financially challenged of all the "Life Tracks" segments.
  • Only 46 percent of those in households making $50,000 per year or less have a retirement plan in place, compared to 89 percent of those in $75,000 or more per year income households.
  • Of the households making $50,000 or less annually, just a quarter say they have money left over at the end of the month.
  • One-third of college graduates (32 percent) say they're living "paycheck to paycheck," compared to nearly half (48 percent) of non-graduates.

Positive thinking

Still, despite the range of financial experiences, nearly all (91 percent) are confident in their own ability to manage their personal finances. This overt optimism trickles down to major milestone expenses along with future security perceptions.

  • Forty-two percent of parents are very confident about their ability to pay for educational opportunities for their children.
  • Four in 10 (41 percent) Americans say they are very confident about their ability to pay for a new car.
  • Close to half (47 percent) of prospective homebuyers are very confident about their ability to buy a new home.
  • Forty-one percent are very confident about being able to afford daily expenses during retirement.
  • A large majority (82 percent) of Americans think they're doing the same or better financially than their friends, neighbors and co-workers, and more than half (52 percent) say they're doing better than their family was when they were growing up.

Debt perception

Although they have earnest intentions to pay off debt, Americans are "treading water" when it comes to debt, savings and investments. Eighty-two percent of Americans say they make some kind of debt-related payment each month.

  • 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.

Priorities, priorities

Every day, Americans consciously decide to place a higher priority on activities other than their finances, yet they recognize they need to do more to improve their financial situations. On average, Americans say they spend just under three hours per week paying bills and managing their household finances. This is about a quarter of the time they say they spend watching television (12 hours), and one-third of the time they spend surfing the Internet (9.2 hours).

  • Fifty-nine percent of Americans say they know what they're supposed to do and generally make the right decisions in regard to their personal finances, but 34 percent say they don't always do it, and 6 percent say they're unsure what to do.
  • With most significant purchases, such as a car, television, vacation or banking and investing decisions they've recently made, the majority (74 to 80 percent) of Americans say they spent the right amount of time considering their available purchase options.
  • Nearly half (47 percent) of Americans say they're saving less than they should be.
  • Forty percent admit they are not handling their personal finances in the way they're supposed to, or that may not even know what to do.
  • Fortunately, an overwhelming majority of Americans (91 percent) believe personal financial management is a skill that someone can improve upon during their lifetime.

To motivate consumers to take action on their personal financial situation, Allstate has developed online resources and a compelling, yet humorous video series, produced by everyday people who responded to a crowdsourced call for entries. The first video launched today, featuring "Hank," a baby who helps put priorities into perspective. Two other videos from different perspectives will follow in the coming weeks.

While an individual's recommended actions for tackling their financial fitness challenges depend on his or her personal situation, three basics are relevant to everyone:

  • Do your homework: You can find a wealth of valuable yet free information about managing your finances, such as personal finance websites, books, newspapers and seminars. Financial professionals can guide you through this information and help you set financial goals. For information about specific products, such as life insurance, you also can ask for a referral from professionals you currently deal with and trust – such as your auto/home insurance agent.
  • Set goals and a timetable to achieve them. But – rather than trying to make progress on all your goals at once – prioritize those goals every year and focus on the two or three that are most important to you.
  • Make a date once a year for an annual life insurance checkup to double-check that the amount and type of coverage is right for your current situation.

Survey Methodology

Reported results are from a nationally representative survey of 1,000 American adults age 18+. The survey was conducted December 15-19, 2012 via landline and cell phone. The survey has a margin of error of +/-3.1% in 95 out of 100 cases. The survey was conducted by FTI Consulting, Inc

The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, serving approximately 16 million households through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names and Allstate Financial business segment. Allstate branded insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services are offered through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives, as well as via www.allstate.com, www.allstate.com/financial and 1-800 Allstate®, and are widely known through the slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®." As part of Allstate's commitment to strengthen local communities, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate employees, agency owners and the corporation provided $29 million in 2012 to thousands of nonprofit organizations and important causes across the United States.

Related Links
Allstate Newsroom
Allstate Financial

 

SOURCE Allstate

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
Companies can harness IoT and predictive analytics to sustain business continuity; predict and manage site performance during emergencies; minimize expensive reactive maintenance; and forecast equipment and maintenance budgets and expenditures. Providing cost-effective, uninterrupted service is challenging, particularly for organizations with geographically dispersed operations.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Avere Systems, a leading provider of enterprise storage for the hybrid cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Avere delivers a more modern architectural approach to storage that doesn’t require the overprovisioning of storage capacity to achieve performance, overspending on expensive storage media for inactive data or the overbuilding of data centers ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
SYS-CON Events announced today that VAI, a leading ERP software provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. VAI (Vormittag Associates, Inc.) is a leading independent mid-market ERP software developer renowned for its flexible solutions and ability to automate critical business functions for the distribution, manufacturing, specialty retail and service sectors. An IBM Premier Business Part...
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Fortunately, meaningful and tangible business cases for IoT are plentiful in a broad array of industries and vertical markets. These range from simple warranty cost reduction for capital intensive assets, to minimizing downtime for vital business tools, to creating feedback loops improving product design, to improving and enhancing enterprise customer experiences. All of these business cases, which will be briefly explored in this session, hinge on cost effectively extracting relevant data from ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies adopt disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevO...
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
As enterprises work to take advantage of Big Data technologies, they frequently become distracted by product-level decisions. In most new Big Data builds this approach is completely counter-productive: it presupposes tools that may not be a fit for development teams, forces IT to take on the burden of evaluating and maintaining unfamiliar technology, and represents a major up-front expense. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Warfield, CTO and Co-Founder of Coho Data, will dis...
SYS-CON Events announced today that iDevices®, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. iDevices, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, has a growing line of HomeKit-enabled products available at the largest retailers worldwide. Through the “Designed with iDevices” co-development program and its custom-built IoT Cloud Infrastruc...
Eighty percent of a data scientist’s time is spent gathering and cleaning up data, and 80% of all data is unstructured and almost never analyzed. Cognitive computing, in combination with Big Data, is changing the equation by creating data reservoirs and using natural language processing to enable analysis of unstructured data sources. This is impacting every aspect of the analytics profession from how data is mined (and by whom) to how it is delivered. This is not some futuristic vision: it's ha...
Silver Spring Networks, Inc. (NYSE: SSNI) extended its Internet of Things technology platform with performance enhancements to Gen5 – its fifth generation critical infrastructure networking platform. Already delivering nearly 23 million devices on five continents as one of the leading networking providers in the market, Silver Spring announced it is doubling the maximum speed of its Gen5 network to up to 2.4 Mbps, increasing computational performance by 10x, supporting simultaneous mesh communic...
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, will provide an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profes...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
One of the bewildering things about DevOps is integrating the massive toolchain including the dozens of new tools that seem to crop up every year. Part of DevOps is Continuous Delivery and having a complex toolchain can add additional integration and setup to your developer environment. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, Miko Matsumura, Chief Marketing Officer of Gradle Inc., will discuss which tools to use in a developer stack, how to provision the toolchain to minimize onboa...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including clou...
Most people haven’t heard the word, “gamification,” even though they probably, and perhaps unwittingly, participate in it every day. Gamification is “the process of adding games or game-like elements to something (as a task) so as to encourage participation.” Further, gamification is about bringing game mechanics – rules, constructs, processes, and methods – into the real world in an effort to engage people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Endo, owner and engagement manager of Intrepid D...