BIRMINGHAM, Ala.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A new survey from Regions Next Step, Regions Bank’s financial education program, finds that the majority of Americans surveyed (81%) do not consider themselves to be “very financially fit.” Additionally, more than two-thirds (69%) of those who do not consider themselves financially fit say they do not have a formal budget and 61% are feeling stressed about their household’s financial situation over the next year.
The survey, conducted in April, provides insight to American sentiment about their current financial fitness and situation. Findings show that having a formal financial budget contributes to feeling more financially fit, which may reduce stress and increase confidence in the ability to withstand a fiscal emergency. Other key findings include:
- 60% of respondents do not have a formal financial budget.
- Respondents who say they have a formal financial budget are two times as likely to say they are “very financially fit” compared to those who do not (21% vs. 10%).
- Respondents who consider themselves financially fit are half as likely to say they are stressed about their finances (31% vs. 61%).
“The COVID-19 pandemic has quickly upended daily life for families across America, resulting in uncertainties and pressures on our household finances,” said Joye Hehn, Community Financial Education Manager for Regions. “Developing a budget can provide a sense of control over your money, rather than letting money have control over you.”
In exploring American sentiment regarding fiscal setbacks, the survey finds that approximately three-quarters (76%) of Americans are not “very confident” they can withstand an unexpected financial emergency. Additionally, if their household experienced a significant financial setback, one-quarter (25%) of Americans believe their savings would last less than one month and close to half of respondents (47%) say it would last three months or less. Additional findings include:
- Those who do not consider themselves financially fit are much more likely to say the money they have saved will last less than one month (44% vs. 14%).
- Even some respondents that consider themselves financially fit are not confident they can withstand an unexpected financial emergency (20%).
- When asked to describe their current financial situation, only 21% of Americans describe themselves as being able to save for emergencies.
However, the survey also finds that having a formal financial budget can lead to increased confidence in facing an unexpected financial emergency. Of those who have a formal budget, nearly two-thirds (65%) feel at least somewhat confident they can withstand a financial setback. Of respondents without a formal budget, 44% say they are not confident they can withstand an emergency.
“Unexpected financial hardships can be stressful. Building up an emergency fund is just one actionable step we can take to help provide financial security when life throws us a curveball,” continued Hehn. “Taking the time to rethink or create a budget with a deeper emergency savings cushion can help us navigate financial challenges when they arise, and it’s never too late to get started.”
Regions continues its commitment to providing financial education and guidance to customers, associates and people in the communities it serves during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Through Next Step, Regions offers a large collection of resources to help people navigate financial challenges, stay on track and safeguard their future.
No matter where you are in your financial wellness journey, Regions is here to provide advice and guidance. Visit Regions.com/NextStepFamilyBudget to explore budgeting and savings tips and tools for you and your family. A wide variety of resources are also available to help navigate any changes to a financial situation at Regions.com/NextStep.
The “Financially Fit Family” survey questions were part of a national online survey that took place between April 1-5, 2020. The survey reached 2,000 US adults. The results are weighted and are representative of all US adults (aged 18+).
About Regions Financial Corporation
Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE:RF), with $133 billion in assets, is a member of the S&P 500 Index and is one of the nation’s largest full-service providers of consumer and commercial banking, wealth management, and mortgage products and services. Regions serves customers across the South, Midwest and Texas, and through its subsidiary, Regions Bank, operates approximately 1,400 banking offices and 2,000 ATMs. Regions Bank is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additional information about Regions and its full line of products and services can be found at www.regions.com.