Millennials Like Saving Money, Want to Save More

Millennials Like Saving Money, Want to Save More

Scott Olson/Getty Images
By Suelain Moy

Millennials have impressive financial habits when compared to baby boomers, according to a new Retirement Saving & Spending Study by T. Rower Price. Millennials like to save, with many taking advantage of 401(k) plans while still paying down debt. On average, millennials are saving nearly as much for retirement -- 8 percent of their incomes -- as baby boomers, who are saving an average of 9 percent. And in the past 12 months, millennials are saving a higher percentage of their incomes than baby boomers when it comes to 401(k) contributions.

The research is based on online interviews with 1,505 millennials and 514 baby boomers with 401(k)s, and includes both workers and retirees.

Overall, millennials in the study report they are in surprisingly good financial shape. Eighty-eight percent say they are living within their means and 74 percent are more comfortable saving and investing extra money than spending it. However, many millennials are pessimistic about Social Security: Sixty percent expect Social Security to go bankrupt before they retire.

Here’s what else the survey reveals:

Millennials like to save, and they’d save more if they could.

Saving for retirement and paying down debt are equally important to millennials, who rank both goals as a top priority. For those who say they are not saving enough, 23 percent cited student loans as a major contributing factor.

Related Link: ‘Irresponsible’ Millennials Saving More Than Almost Every Other Group

Millennials like auto-enrollment plans.

Seventy-nine percent of the millennials who were auto-enrolled in 401(k) plans were satisfied with auto-enrollment. When it comes to 401(k) matches, 59 percent of millennials set their 401(k) contribution rate to take full advantage of their employers’ matches.

They’re open to advice and more likely to ask for help if they need it.

If faced with a sudden financial emergency, 55 percent of millennials said they’d seek the help of family and friends, compared to 24 percent of baby boomers. Millennials were also much more likely to admit they could benefit from help with spending and debt management.

They find it hard to save when they make less money.

Non-savers made less money and carried more student debt. The median personal income of non-savers was $28,000, compared to $57,000 for savers. Thirty-nine percent of the non-savers have trouble meeting their monthly expenses.

Men save more.

Millennial women are less likely to save in 401(k)s, even if they are eligible, and when they do, they save less than men. The average 401(k) balance for women participating in their 401(k) is $38,000, compared to an average 401(k) balance of $74,000 for men. Of those who are already participating in 401(k)s, only 41 percent of the savers are women.

Related link: Here Are 7 Ways People Screw Up Their 401(k)s

Chart of the Day: Long Way to Go on Coronavirus Testing

Healthcare workers with ChristianaCare test people with symptoms of the coronavirus in a drive-thru in the parking lot of Chase
Jennifer Corbett
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The White House on Friday unveiled plans for a new effort to ramp up testing for Covid-19, which experts say is an essential part of limiting the spread of the virus. This chart from Vox gives a sense of just how far the U.S. has to go to catch up to other countries that are dealing with the pandemic, including South Korea, the leading virus screener with 3,692 tests per million people. The U.S., by comparison, has done about 23 tests per million people as of March 12.

After Spending $2 Billion, Air Force Bails Out on Planned Upgrades of B-2 Bombers

The B-2 Spirit stealth bomber flies over the Missouri Sky after taking off from the Whiteman Air For..
© Hyungwon Kang / Reuters
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The Air Force has scrapped a planned upgrade of its B-2 stealth bomber fleet — even after spending $2 billion on the effort — because defense contractor Northrup Grumman didn’t have the necessary software expertise to complete the project on time and on budget, Bloomberg’s Anthony Capaccio reports, citing the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer.

Ellen Lord, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, told reporters that the nearly $2 billion that had already been spent on the program wasn’t wasted because “we are still going to get upgraded electronic displays.”

Big Hurdle for Sanders’ Plan to Cancel Student Debt

Chip East / REUTERS
By The Fiscal Times Staff

Bernie Sanders wants to eliminate $1.6 trillion in student debt, to be paid for by a tax on financial transactions, but doing so won’t be easy, says Josh Mitchell of The Wall Street Journal.  

The main problem for Sanders is that most Americans don’t support the plan, with 57% of respondents in a poll last fall saying they oppose the idea of canceling all student debt. And the politics are particularly thorny for Sanders as he prepares for a likely general election run, Mitchell says: “Among the strongest opponents are groups Democrats hope to peel away from President Trump: Rust Belt voters, independents, whites, men and voters in rural areas.”

Number of the Day: $7 Million

NY mayor cites climate stance in endorsing Obama
By The Fiscal Times Staff

That’s how much Michael Bloomberg is spending per day in his pursuit of the Democratic presidential nomination, according to new monthly filings with the Federal Election Commission. “In January alone, Bloomberg dropped more than $220 million on his free-spending presidential campaign,” The Hill says. “That breaks down to about $7.1 million a day, $300,000 an hour or $5,000 per minute.”