Just Over Half of Americans Have More Emergency Savings Than Credit Card Debt
NEW YORK, Feb. 25, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Only 55% of Americans have more emergency savings than credit card debt, according to research published today by Bankrate.com (NYSE: RATE). Last year, Bankrate found that 54% of Americans had more emergency savings than credit card debt; the figure was 52% in 2011.
"Consumers may be deleveraging, but the proportion of people with more emergency savings than credit card debt hasn't changed much," said Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate.com's senior financial analyst. "Given the poll's 3.5% margin of error, one can make the argument that consumers haven't moved the needle at all over the past 24 months."
Bankrate also announced that its Financial Security Index dropped from 98.6 in January to 96.8 in February, surrendering most of the improvement that took place from December to January. A reading of 100 means consumers' feelings of financial security are unchanged from one year ago; the index has been below 100 – indicative of deteriorating financial security – in 25 of the 27 months since its inception.
Thanks to rebounding home prices and the buoyant stock market, net worth was the only component to improve from January to February. Job security, savings, debt and overall financial situation all declined. When consumers were asked whether they are feeling better, worse or about the same now versus one year ago, net worth was also the only component to register in positive territory. Among the highest-income households (income of $75,000 per year or more), all five components declined over the past month.
The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) and can be seen in its entirety here:
PSRAI obtained telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,004 adults living in the continental United States. Interviews were conducted by landline (500) and cell phone (504, including 254 without a landline phone) in English by Princeton Data Source from February 7-10, 2013. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
About Bankrate, Inc.
Bankrate is a leading publisher, aggregator, and distributor of personal finance content on the Internet. Bankrate provides consumers with proprietary, fully researched, comprehensive, independent and objective personal finance editorial content across multiple vertical categories including mortgages, deposits, insurance, credit cards, and other categories, such as retirement, automobile loans, and taxes. The Bankrate network includes Bankrate.com, our flagship website, and other owned and operated personal finance websites, including CreditCards.com, Interest.com, Bankaholic.com, Mortgage-calc.com, CreditCardGuide.com, Nationwide Card Services, InsuranceQuotes.com, CarInsuranceQuotes.com, InsureMe, Bankrate.com.cn, CreditCards.ca, NetQuote.com, and CD.com. Bankrate aggregates rate information from over 4,800 institutions on more than 300 financial products. With coverage of nearly 600 local markets in all 50 U.S. states, Bankrate generates over 172,000 distinct rate tables capturing on average over three million pieces of information daily. Bankrate develops and provides web services to over 80 co-branded websites with online partners, including some of the most trusted and frequently visited personal finance sites on the Internet such as Yahoo!, AOL, CNBC, and Bloomberg. In addition, Bankrate licenses editorial content to over 500 newspapers on a daily basis including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and The Boston Globe.
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SOURCE Bankrate, Inc.