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American Consumers Optimistic Despite Financial Pressures

Survey shows significant majority of consumers expect to reach financial prosperity in the next 10 years

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  • Written by  Banking Exchange staff
American Consumers Optimistic Despite Financial Pressures

More than three-quarters of Americans are optimistic about their financial future, despite mounting macroeconomic pressures.

A survey by Santander US found 77% of consumers believe they can become financially prosperous within the next decade.

However, pressures are mounting for middle-income Americans, with 82% identifying inflation as a major concern in their effort to achieve financial prosperity.

Federal student-loan payments are also causing economic stress. The survey found a third of respondents across all generations owe student-loan debt, and 69% of that group said the resumption of federal student-loan payments is challenging their ability to achieve financial prosperity.

The survey also found a large majority of Americans are not taking advantage of the recent increase in interest rates. Two-thirds (66%) of middle-income Americans have not moved their savings into higher-yielding accounts since the start of 2022.

Almost two in three respondents (64%) were receiving less than 3% interest on their savings and 22% of those with a savings account did not know the interest rate they are receiving.

This finding could be due to the lack of financial knowledge found in the survey. Just 11% of respondents were able to correctly answer four questions on savings accounts.

Tim Wennes, Santander US CEO, said: “Having the information needed to make important financial decisions is crucial for reaching one’s financial goals.”

The survey also found 76% of middle-income Americans rely on a vehicle for their commute to work, and from that group 69% are willing to sacrifice other budgetary items to maintain access to their vehicle.

The research follows a survey from JD Power which found that the percentage of financially healthy customers has hit its lowest point in a year, with just 29% of respondents reporting being financially healthy.

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