Millennials and Generation X are stressed, bankrupt and in debt
- Insider’s new series, “The state of our money,“examines the financial health of Americans.
- Insider has partnered with Morning Consult to survey more than 2,000 Americans and found that millennia and Generation X are struggling financially.
- Generation X has a more negative view of their finances, while millennia think they are doing well compared to their peers.
- Both generations are also stressed about money and do not save for retirement.
- Learn more about personal finance coverage.
Finances seem a bit bleak for some Americans.
Insider recently teamed up with Morning consultation to survey 2,096 Americans about their financial health, debt and income for its new series, “The state of our money“The results largely didn’t look good, especially for Gen Y and Gen X (672 and 566 respondents, respectively). The overall margin of error is around 2%.
For the purposes of this article, we have largely focused on these two generations as they are in their early years of work. Although Gen Z and Baby Boomers were both surveyed, we refrained from analyzing both generations because many are not in the workforce (not yet working or retired).
The majority of indebted millennials and Gen Xers feel the brunt of their debt. Gen Xers are more oppressed when it comes to their finances, while Millennials think they’re doing well, at least compared to their peers. And the two are not preparing adequately for retirement.
Here are some of the key themes that popped up repeatedly in the survey results.
Millennials and Gen Xers are also stressed about money
Millennials are known to be financially behind thanks to the fallout from the Grand
, high cost of living, and huge student loan debt – but Gen Xers are just as stressed about money, especially when it comes to debt.
Of those who responded, more than half of all Millennials and Generation X respondents said they were “a little” or “a lot” stressed about their credit card debt, personal loan debt. or student loan:
- Of the 51.5% of millennials with credit card debt, 67.4% are stressed
- Of the 54.5% of Gen Xers who have credit card debt, 64.3% are stressed
- Of the 24.3% of millennials who have personal loans, 62% are stressed
- Of the 24.6% of Gen Xers who have personal loans, 62.5% are stressed
- Of the 28.4% of millennials with undergraduate student loan debt, 72.2% are stressed
- Of the 15.5% of Gen Xers with undergraduate student loan debt, 62.5% are stressed
Gen Xers are the most stressed about credit card debt, while Millennials are the most stressed about student loan debt. The latter problem is a particular problem – it’s so stressful that nearly half of debt-to-debt respondents of both generations say taking these college loans wasn’t worth it.
But it’s not just debt that is stressful – money is a huge stressor in a marriage, too.
Nearly 64% of married millennials say money causes a little or a lot of stress with their partner. Almost half of Gen X respondents say the same thing. For baby boomers, that percentage drops to around 36%, highlighting a large generation gap.
Even singles dating say money is stressful for them.
Generation X feels financially desperate
If Gen X’s financial stress level indicates anything, it’s that they are financially worse for usury – at least, they think so.
When asked how they would rate their financial health, just over 41% of Gen Xers said it was not very good or not good at all. It is worse than millennials, 37% of whom said the same. More Gen X than Millennials also think their finances are much worse, a little worse than their peers – around 43% versus 36%.
Gen Xers are also less likely than Gen Y to think they earn more than their peers and more likely to think they earn less. Among Gen X respondents, half think they earn less than their peers – 29% think they earn less and have less debt, while around 21% think they earn less and have more debts.
Millennials read their own press
Meanwhile, millennials think they’re doing well, at least compared to their peers.
More millennials (around 46%) think their finances are a little or a lot better than others of their generation than those who think they are a little or a lot worse (36%). The remaining percentage said they didn’t know or didn’t have an opinion.
But only 34% of millennials think they make more money than their peers, compared to 44% who think they earn less than their peers (again, the remaining percentage said they didn’t know). But only 35% of millennials think they have more debt than their peers, while 48% think they have less debt.
These perceptions could be due to millennials reading their own press about their the financial problems of the generation – like how they are suffering from stagnant wages, fighting for afford basic foods such as shelter, and facing sky-high student loan debt.
If millennials globally think they are doing better than their peers, the situation on the ground may be better than we think. While things may be difficult for the generation, the fundamentals may not be as bad as the story told to them.
No one saves anything – and some just don’t care
Many millennials and Generation X are not prepare for retirement.
Only half of Gen Xers reported having a 401 (k) Where retirement account – and 13% of Gen X said they have an account, but are not currently contributing. And 54% of millennials don’t have a retirement account, but only 11% of millennials who do not make monthly contributions.
Among Gen X respondents who don’t have a 401 (k) account or retirement plan, about 70% said it was because they didn’t have enough to save, while almost half did said it’s because they are unemployed (respondents were allowed to choose more than one reason). Fewer millennials without a retirement account cited the same reasons – 63% said it was because they didn’t have enough money, while 45% said it was because they were inactive .
And about a third of every generation said they don’t have one because they just don’t care.
Come back to “The state of our money“throughout the month for more in-depth results and analysis.