FORT WORTH, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Career military families who partner with a financial coach are setting the pace during Military Saves Week (Feb. 26 - March 3) by out-saving their do-it-yourself counterparts and feeling more secure and optimistic about the future.
The latest findings from the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveal that 62 percent of middle-class military families (commissioned officers and NCOs in pay grades E-5 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000) who work with a financial advisor report owning a retirement account. That’s 16 points higher than those who do not use an advisor. They report contributing more on average than their do-it-yourself counterparts – $995 per month versus $410. And they are more likely to maintain long-term savings accounts (49 percent versus 28 percent) and contribute more dollars to those accounts ($544 per month versus $319).
“Setting goals and making plans are key themes for Military Saves Week, and we see the results reflected in the savings habits of middle-income service members and their families who work with a financial coach,” said Scott Spiker, chairman and CEO of First Command Financial Services, Inc. “Saving for retirement is a particularly important issue this year as military families deal with uncertainties related to the new Blended Retirement System. Our survey findings continue to reveal that those who work with a financial advisor are more likely to save – and put away more dollars – than those who save and invest on their own. By coaching their clients to build strong money behaviors, financial advisors help families deal with the uncertainties of the new system and put money away for the future.”
What strategies are military families using to shore up their finances? Two out of five survey respondents say they are increasing the amount they are saving and cutting back on everyday spending. And 14 percent say they have started to work with a financial advisor.
“One of the fundamental ways a trusted financial professional can help boost savings is by coaching their clients to set goals and make plans that are built on a pay-yourself-first strategy of automatic savings,” Spiker said. “At a time when so many military families feel anxiety about the future, it is worth noting that those who save more feel greater financial security and confidence.”
Seventy-eight percent of families who work with a financial advisor are extremely or very confident that their financial situation will improve in the next year. In contrast, just 38 percent of families without an advisor report the same feelings of confidence.
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.