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Home | Daily Dose | Survey Finds a Lack of Savings for Many Americans
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Survey Finds a Lack of Savings for Many Americans

Nearly 70 million adults have no emergency savings, while nearly one in four would run out of money in 30 days, according to a new survey put out by NeighborWorks America. The survey found that 22 percent of adults, or roughly 53 million adults, have only enough saved for one month.

The survey was released, “[T]o mark the beginning of financial capability month, call attention to the fragility of many families' finances nearly five years since the end of the Great Recession, and assess consumers' interest in nonprofit resources to help them build financial stability," the organization said in a press release.

Results from the survey also found that 48 percent of respondents said their cash reserves would last as long as three months, and 28 percent expect savings to last for a year.

In total, 68 percent of consumers reported setting aside money in case of a financial emergency.

"These data have to light a fire under all of us who want to see Americans better able to withstand a financial crisis, especially a recession as devastating as the one we’re climbing out of now," said Eileen Fitzgerald, NeighborWorks America CEO. "Our survey underscores the need to provide better tools and information for people to manage the money they do have in order to build a strong financial base."

Top savings goals found by the survey include retirement and buying a home. 13 percent of survey respondents reported that saving to buy a home is their top priority.

Race played a factor as well. The survey found that of the 29 percent of adults with no emergency savings, 43 percent were African-American and 39 percent were Hispanic. White respondents made up a reported 24 percent of adults with no emergency savings.

Not surprisingly, higher income earners were more apt to save, while lower income earners were not.

"Just 11 percent of people making $100,000 or more per year said that they had no emergency fund, while more than half (52%) of people earning less than $40,000 said that they had no such reserve.  People whose income places them squarely in the middle class also are financially vulnerable, with 24 percent of adults with income between $40-59,000 holding no emergency fund," the survey reported.

Fitzgerald believes everyone, even those with limited income, can save for emergencies and other financial opportunities.

"In today's marketplace, everyone, including those with limited incomes, can set aside some savings for emergencies and work to achieve other financial goals. We are seeing great results for consumers who use a financial coach to help them start saving, reduce debt and work toward financial goals."

About Author: Colin Robins

Colin Robins
Colin Robins is the online editor for He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Texas A&M University and a Master of Arts from the University of Texas, Dallas. Additionally, he contributes to the MReport, DS News' sister site.

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