The savings problem

Americans are experiencing widespread financial instability

The Reality

Despite a booming economy and low unemployment, 78% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck just to cover bills, rent, and basic living expenses.

60% of households are unprepared for a financial shock, with 41% unable to cover an unexpected $400 expense without borrowing money or selling a personal item. This makes saving incredibly challenging, especially for many low- to moderate-income households.

Recent stories of Americans affected by the 2019 government shutdown illustrate just how fragile the lives of workers can be when the unexpected happens.

Options for coping are limited. Data from the U.S. Financial Health Pulse shows that Americans are savings-constrained, over-indebted and underinsured.

Research and Thought Leadership:
The Scope and Size of the Savings Problem

Redesigning the Financial Roadmap for the LMI 50+ Segment
Even LMI 50+ individuals who say they have enough savings to cover six months of expenses say they’d be living on very modest incomes in the event of an emergency. Read more about how the Saving Shortfall impacts this cohort.

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Scratch & Save: Engaging Digital Experiences Build Financial Security
Scratch & Save, a digital prize-linked saving campaign was launched to motivate weekly small-dollar savings. Read an overview and the key takeaways to inspire and inform future use of digital features to drive savings and financial security.

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U.S. Financial Health Pulse: 2018 Baseline Survey Results
45% of Americans say they do not have enough savings to cover at least three months of living expenses. Read more about the savings challenges people living in America are facing in the U.S. Financial Health Pulse.

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The State of Prize-Linked Savings
Prize-linked savings is a proven, innovative and engaging approach to savings. Read about the opportunities to grow PLS participation, drive business value for institutions, and help financially vulnerable people save.

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Preparing for Tomorrow by Fixing Today
27% of Americans report having less than $1,000 saved for retirement and 50% are at risk of not having enough to maintain their living standards in retirement. Read how we can prepare for tomorrow by fixing today.

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Increasing Short-Term Savings
The benefits of short-term savings are clear, yet research shows that 46% of Americans could not cover a $400 emergency expense. Read about the work Common Cents Lab undertook to increase savings behavior.

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Building Financial Security Through Integrated Financial Solutions
People’s financial lives are more interconnected than traditional financial products suggest. Products that fail to acknowledge this optimize one function at the expense of the whole.

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U.S. Financial Diaries: Emergency Savings
Household are reaching just 23% of their emergency savings goals, and are not closing the gap as income increases. This suggests the need for short-term savings is acute.

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Join Us!

The deadline to join the Year One cohort is May 31, 2019.