Yesterday’s USA Today featured a study commissioned by the Consumer Federation of America and Certified Financial Planner Board of Standard, which revealed that more households are struggling financially than 15 years ago.
I’m not shocked by this “revelation.” Talking to one of my favorite bloggers, Len Penzo (from the aptly named Len Penzo dot Com) a couple weeks ago, Len commented that a “big” financial blogger is lucky to find 700-800 unique visitors per day. I know that financial blogs don’t always have the money answers, but on a recent visit to web-traffic website Compete.com, I saw that another favorite, humorist writer The Bloggess receives about 1400 unique visitors a day.
So, using my extraordinary math and non-scientific research skills, it appears that about double the number of people enjoy humor during their day than seek out financial management techniques and discussion.
Are we really worried?
People sometimes think that financial plans are for the rich. “I don’t have money to plan,” you may be telling yourself right now. But how can you get out of debt if you don’t plan your financial future?
The survey shows that when low-income families put together a financial plan, they’re able to stay out of debt and pay credit card bills in their entirety. However, only 31% of people surveyed have put together a financial plan (with or without an advisor’s help).
31%? And the headline reads that we’re “worried about retirement?”
More evidence of financial ennui from the study: more people are living paycheck to paycheck, less are saving toward their college-bound children’s education, less can retire at age 65 and more think they won’t be able to cover basic expenses in retirement.
It sounds like we have big financial headaches and 69% of people aren’t attacking the problem.
Normally, I’m a “glass half-full” kind of guy. However, in this case, I think the headline “Americans Worried About Retirement” should be replaced with “Americans Screwed and Not Doing Much About It.”
I’m glad you’re visiting today to be the few…the proud…the 31%!
Let’s vote: Glass half full? Half empty?