LOS ANGELES, March 11, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- On March 13, 2020, COVID-19 was declared a national emergency in the U.S., thus drastically changing everyone's lives overnight. As we mark the one-year anniversary, we know the effects of the virus on the world and, more specifically, society will be felt for many years to come. Not only has the pandemic changed the way we work, eat, socialize, work out and our overall perception of time but it has had a severe impact on the state of the economy as well as detrimentally impacting the finances of Americans all across the country.
"As we hit the one-year mark of the coronavirus pandemic, GOBankingRates is reflecting on how COVID-19 has affected nearly every aspect of the economy and how Americans work, spend, save and invest," said Gabrielle Olya, Lead Writer at GOBankingRates. "We've also spoken to experts across a number of fields to get their insights on the financial lessons the pandemic has taught us, how far we've come in the past 12 months and what we still need to do to get back to 'normal.'"
One especially hot topic of this past year has been the issuing of stimulus checks. On Wednesday, March 10th the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan passed in the House of Representatives, meaning that the third direct payment checks would be on their way once the Act is signed by President Biden. But according to a new GOBankingRates survey, the spending of this most recent check varies with 45% saying it would be going to paying bills and 39% saying it would be used to purchase groceries.
Americans all across the country have had to deal with numerous financial pressures this past year. These common issues include losing a job, sacrificing careers for childcare, covering health expenses, pivoting businesses to stay afloat and much more. Maintaining daily and monthly expenses like rent or mortgage payments has even become an intense struggle. GOBankingRates' new survey has found that a staggering 46% of Americans missed one or more rent/mortgage payments, and that 25% have missed more than one.
- Men missed more payments than women, with 48% of men saying they missed one payment, and 45% of women.
- An overwhelming majority of Americans -67%-say they have taken on some kind of debt, with the largest section being in the $1,000 - $4,999 range, at 21%.
- Men said they accrued larger amounts of debt with women having a higher response rate to smaller amounts of debt.
Missed payments and accruement of debt could be the direct result of layoffs and reduced work hours. GOBankingRates' survey recently also revealed that 22% of Americans who lost their jobs are still unemployed. "Those who are in the entry level jobs at most companies are usually seen as the most dispensable, so the logic follows that if they were let go at the beginning of the pandemic, they would also in most cases be the last to be rehired," GOBankingRates associate researcher Julia O'Brien says.
- 27% of Americans received unemployment for the first time, while 46% say they received some sort of unemployment.
- Younger generations were hit the hardest - 36% of the 18 to 24 age group and 33% of the 25 to 34 age group say they received unemployment benefits for the first time.
- Looking to the future, 61% of the respondents say they are confident in their employment status for the rest of 2021.
As the world continues to make progress with tackling this tragic pandemic, GOBankingRates is looking towards a brighter future and hopes for the nation to be able to continue on with their goals and plans to Live Richer™.
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