The survey, from the Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards and the Consumer Federation of America, compared attitudes about household finances today with sentiments in 1997, when the United States was enjoying an extended stock-market boom.
Specifically, 60 percent of respondents are saving for a major purchase today, compared with 52 percent in 1997.
Despite the soaring cost of a college education, “fewer of those in families with a college-bound child have started to save for college education,” the survey noted, by 48 percent today, versus 56 percent in 1997.
The survey and interviews reveal when people go through an extended time of economic fear they want to reward themselves by doing some selfish spending on themselves. These feelings come from going through an extended period of time of feeling hopeless.
This diverting of cash from college savings to cars and vacations shows that a families access to credit has been blocked. They need real cash to get anything purchased. The one bright side to the entire affair is that people are saving again.
Other mitigating factors are the earning power of families has been diminished by lower paying jobs and not having a job. This overall economic decline in the families income is also coupled with feelings of neglect and failure in the producing proper financial resources that the family needs.
People who are in this situation are usually under water in their home and living paycheck to paycheck.
The effects of are current economic slow down not only effect families today but the repercussion may even be felt for the next generation.