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Data and Statistics on Consumer Spending Habits

May 3, 2024|0 min read
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Many consumers struggle to manage their finances even without the added stress of today’s record-high interest rates and inflation. In fact, MX’s research found that 13% of consumers say they do not always have enough to pay for everyday necessities. 

Financial services providers have an opportunity to help consumers better understand and manage their spending in ways that build financial strength. Here’s a collection of MX’s top statistics and trends on consumer spending habits from our consumer research reports

In this post, you’ll find stats and graphics related to: 

When you see where you’re spending your money, you can make better decisions. Every bit of information that you can use to understand your financial situation better, can lead to you making better decisions for yourself, which add up significantly over time

Consumer Spending and Money Management Today

  • Only 39% of Americans have enough savings to cover a $1,000 emergency. (Financial Wellness Use Case)
  • Only 30% of Americans have a long-term financial plan that includes savings and investment goals. (Financial Wellness Use Case)
  • More than 1 in 10 (13%) respondents do not always have enough to pay for everyday necessities. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)
  • 53% of consumers say money is a source of stress for them. Additionally, 52% agree thinking about money makes them anxious. (How to Keep Consumers From Breaking Up with Banks, 2024
  • 26% of consumers are worried about how they would cover unexpected expenses. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023
  • Nearly one-third of consumers are confident in their ability to cover any expenses, with Baby Boomers (41%) and Millennials (34%) most confident. Men are more confident than women with 39% of men reporting they are confident in their ability to cover any expenses compared to 25% of women. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)
  • When asked if they have any emergency savings, only 60% of respondents say yes. That means 40% don’t. (Consumer Money Matters, 2022)
  • Of those who do have emergency savings, more than one-third (36%) say they have more than $5,000 set aside. However, among Gen Z, this drops to just 17%, and more than half say they only have $1,000 or less (53%). (Consumer Money Matters, 2022)
  • 65% of consumers have cut items from their budget to save money. This is highest among Gen X at 72%. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)

Preferred Consumer Payment Methods

Top Factors for Preferred Payment Methods

  • When asked how likely they would be to pay directly from a checking account rather than using a credit or debit card if there was an incentive, 55% said it was likely. (What Influences Where Consumers Choose to Bank, 2023)
  • When asked in which cases they would be likely to add a personal checking account as a payment method, consumers were split into 3 primary camps overall (What Influences Where Consumers Choose to Bank, 2023): 
    • If there was a promotion or added benefit (37%)
    • For retailers where they shop frequently (36%)
    • Never (36%)

Adding a Checking Account

How Consumers Think About Debt

  • 41% of consumers are carrying a balance month-to-month on their credit cards. This is highest among Millennials (44%) and Gen X (48%). (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)
  • 11% of consumers only have a credit card for emergencies and 17% don’t have a credit card at all. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)
  • Gen Z is least likely to have a credit card — 21% say they don’t have one, compared to 11% of Baby Boomers. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023)
  • 61% of Millennials, 65% of Gen X, and 81% of Baby Boomers have a credit card. (Consumer Money Matters, 2022)
  • Across generations, we asked what statement most closely aligns with their current perspective on applying for loans. The majority of Gen Z and Millennial respondents were more aligned to paying in full rather than carrying a loan. On the other side, the largest portion of Gen X and Baby Boomers align with the statement that loans are necessary for larger purchases such as a home or vehicle. (What is Financial Wellness?, 2023

Applying for Loans

How Financial Providers Can Help Consumers Manage Spending

Top Goals

  • 50% of consumers expect financial providers to deliver personalized offers for tools, products, and services to help them reach their financial goals. Other top expectations for personalization include (What Influences Where Consumers Choose to Bank, 2023): 
    • Discounts or offers for brands that I use (44%)
    • Customized insights in the online or app experience to help me understand my spending (43%) 
    • Proactive notifications and recommendations to help me better manage money (42%)
    • Ability to personalize a card, such as choose my displayed name, etc. (36%)
    • Automated budgeting and analysis of my spending (31%)

Top Personalization Expectations

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