It has been a long time since Americans have been known as savers, and the situation has gotten even worse.
“among those who had savings prior to 2008, 57% said they’d used some or all of their savings in the Great Recession” – U.S. Federal Reserve
Now, 62% have less than $1,000 in savings meaning emergencies require selling assets, borrowing from friends and family, increasing credit card debt, or doing without – and doing without can mean doing without health care, education, and in some cases, food and housing. There has been much debate about the financial health of the middle class and below, but while the debates continue, a large majority of Americans are already living in austerity, without a cushion or safety net, and with no recourse. As it takes money to make money, and as accidents are inevitable, the probability of getting ahead becomes smaller than the probability of falling behind – painfully.
(Click on the graph for the link.)