66% of Americans Don't Have Holiday Budgets

New Bankrate poll reveals how Americans feel about their finances

Dec 13, 2010, 10:26 ET from Bankrate, Inc.

NEW YORK, Dec. 13, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- A new study released by Bankrate, Inc. shows that even though many Americans feel less comfortable with their financial security now than they did 12 months ago, the majority has not implemented a budget for the holiday season.  The poll, conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, can be seen in its entirety here:  http://www.bankrate.com/finance/consumer-index/financial-security-index-dec-2010-1.aspx.

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Among the findings:

  • Two-thirds, or 66 percent, of Americans have no holiday budget.
  • Forty-three percent of families earning $75,000 or more per year have a holiday budget, compared to 24 percent who earn less than $30,000 per year.  
  • Despite gradual economic recovery, only 14 percent of Americans are more comfortable with their savings now than 12 months ago; whereas, 44 percent are less comfortable and 39 percent feel the same.
  • Nearly one-third of Americans, 32 percent, feel that their overall finances have declined compared to last year.  Age significantly impacts financial security with 40 percent of people between 50-64 believing that their finances are deteriorating.

"Given the significant amount of money that households often spend during the holidays – for gifts, meals, travel, and even decorations – it's alarming that two-thirds of Americans do not have a holiday budget," said Bankrate's Senior Financial Analyst Greg McBride, CFA.

Bankrate's Financial Security Index results are based on telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,003 adults, ages 18 and older. The interviews were conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 5, 2010, by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is +/- 3.6 percentage points.

About Bankrate, Inc.

The Bankrate network of companies includes Bankrate.com, Interest.com, Mortgage-calc.com, Nationwide Card Services, Savingforcollege.com, Fee Disclosure, InsureMe CreditCardGuide.com and Bankaholic.  Each of these businesses helps consumers to make informed decisions about their personal finance matters. The company's flagship brand, Bankrate.com is a destination site of personal finance channels, including banking, investing, taxes, debt management and college finance. Bankrate.com is the leading aggregator of rates and other information on more than 300 financial products, including mortgages, credit cards, new and used auto loans, money market accounts and CDs, checking and ATM fees, home equity loans and online banking fees. Bankrate.com reviews more than 4,800 financial institutions in 575 markets in 50 states. In 2008, Bankrate.com had nearly 72 million unique visitors. Bankrate.com provides financial applications and information to a network of more than 75 partners, including Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO), America Online (NYSE: TWX), The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times (NYSE: NYT). Bankrate.com's information is also distributed through more than 500 newspapers.  Bankrate, Inc. was acquired by Apax Partners, one of the world's leading private equity investment group, in September 2009.  Apax operates across the United States, Europe and Asia and has more than 30 years of investing experience. For more information on Apax, visit: www.Apax.com.

Bankrate Senior Financial Analyst Greg McBride, CFA will be available to discuss the findings of the poll today.  If you'd like to speak with him please let me know or for more information please contact:

Hilary Dommu


Bankrate, Inc.

477 Madison Avenue, Suite 430

Ph. (917) 368-8635

Cell (561) 289-3556

Fx. (917) 368-8611



SOURCE Bankrate, Inc.