For many, the economic recovery being touted by the mainstream media has not yet affected them. About 25% of Americans say that a decade after the housing bust that caused the Great Recession, they are doing worse. Almost half of Americans are not doing any better at all too.
If you believe the mainstream media, the economy is robust and the unemployment rate is at a 49-year-low. But not all Americans have recovered from the Great Recession. According to a new survey from Bankrate of about 3,000 Americans, 23% of people who were adults when the recession started in December 2007 say they are now financially worse off than they were before the recession hit. That percentage amounts to just under 50 million Americans. Another 25% say they are doing the “same.” In all, just over half believe their “overall finances” are better than before.
“Americans were and continue to be in a degree of denial of the financial crisis and Great Recession,” said Mark Hamrick, Bankrate’s senior economic analyst according to a report by Yahoo Finance. “One of the constant themes that presents itself in the data is that Americans are still digging out in many ways from that experience.”
“While some have managed to prosper in the decade since, there are still tens of millions who are struggling to even get back to where they were before the economy took a turn for the worse,” added Hamrick. Could that mean that the economy is not all that robust? We certainly think so. But speaking the truth is a revolutionary act in times of deceit.
When asked about their salaries, less than half of the respondents said their wages were better than before, while more than a third say that it is worse. But if you’re a millennial (29-38) you’re in luck: Only 16% of this demographic who were adults during the Great Recession say their pay is worse now. That’s compared to 26% of baby boomers (aged 55-73). “If you take this data at face value — where less than half of the adult population say that their pay is better — and most indicate it is not better, that tells you enough and raises enough of a question about the true improvement that Americans have experienced,” Hamrick said.
But some have been questioning this economy for a while now. It is heavily manipulated by the Federal Reserve and the government is doing nothing to prevent the devaluation of the dollar or inflation. For this reason, we have taken to suggesting financial preparation as incredibly important to consider at this time. Storing food and water will always be good ideas, however, we should take the time to get our finances straightened out as well. There are several ways to go about it, but an easy to follow plan is Dave Ramsey’s “baby steps.” He suggests paying down your debts and has often said he “hates debt more than anyone.”