FORT WORTH, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The possibility of a government shutdown in April is fueling considerable anxiety in America’s career military families.
The latest results of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveal that 68 percent of middle-class military families (commissioned officers and senior NCOs in pay grades E-5 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000) are feeling anxious about a potential repeat of the 2013 government shutdown. That’s about the same anxiety level as reported in December, when lawmakers passed a stopgap spending bill to fund the government through April 28.
Anxiety is less pronounced in the general population, where 49 percent of respondents say they are worried about a government shutdown.
Despite these high levels of worry, the majority of survey respondents are still hopeful that lawmakers will ultimately avert a shutdown. The Index reveals that 71 percent of military families are confident that Congress will take positive action. That’s down 14 points from December. In comparison, 61 percent of the general population reports feeling confident in Congress. That’s about the same as recorded in December.
“Looming prospects of another government shutdown are creating a complex mix of emotions for our Nation’s career military families,” said Scott Spiker, chairman/CEO of First Command Financial Services, Inc. “The last shutdown led to interruptions in and cancellations of active duty work and training and in some cases directly affected the daily lives of service member families. But these families have seen Congress avoid a number of potential government shutdowns in recent years, so they remain optimistic that lawmakers will ultimately find a path forward.”
Meanwhile, the Index shows continuing anxiety over other government-related financial issues, specifically cuts to defense spending and military pay and benefits.
“Sequestration is an issue of great concern, with seven out of ten military families feeling anxious and anticipating being financially impacted by the cuts,” Spiker said. “We expect high levels of worry over the financial impact of government decisions – and indecisions – to continue in the months ahead.”
First Command recently announced that it will extend direct deposit pay to its military and federal employee clients as part of a comprehensive plan to address potential financial hardships in the event of a government shutdown.
About the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®
Compiled by Sentient Decision Science, Inc., the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® assesses trends among the American public’s financial behaviors, attitudes and intentions through a monthly survey of approximately 530 U.S. consumers aged 25 to 70 with annual household incomes of at least $50,000. Results are reported quarterly. The margin of error is +/- 4.3 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. http://www.firstcommand.com/fbi/
About Sentient Decision Science, Inc.
Sentient Decision Science was commissioned by First Command to compile the Financial Behaviors Index®. SDS is a behavioral science and consumer psychology consulting firm with special vertical expertise within the financial services industry. SDS specializes in advanced research methods and statistical analysis of behavioral and attitudinal data.
About First Command
First Command Financial Services and its subsidiaries, including First Command Financial Planning and First Command Bank, coach our Nation’s military families in their pursuit of financial security. Since 1958, First Command Financial Advisors have been shaping positive financial behaviors through face-to-face coaching with hundreds of thousands of client families.
First Command Financial Services, Inc., is the parent of First Command Financial Planning, Inc. (Member SIPC, FINRA), First Command Advisory Services, Inc., First Command Insurance Services, Inc. and First Command Bank. Financial planning services and investment products, including securities, are offered by First Command Financial Planning, Inc., a broker-dealer. Financial planning and investment advisory services are offered by First Command Advisory Services, Inc., an investment adviser. Insurance products and services are offered by First Command Insurance Services, Inc., in all states except Montana, where as required by law, insurance products and services are offered by First Command Financial Services, Inc. (a separate Montana domestic corporation). Banking products and services are offered by First Command Bank. In certain states, as required by law, First Command Insurance Services, Inc. does business as a separate domestic corporation. Securities products are not FDIC insured, have no bank guarantee and may lose value. A financial plan, by itself, cannot assure that retirement or other financial goals will be met. First Command Financial Services, Inc. and its related entities are not affiliated with, authorized to sell or represent on behalf of or otherwise endorsed by any federal employee benefits programs referenced, by the U.S. government, or the U.S. armed forces.