According to a recent study, 45 percent of Americans have more credit card debt than emergency savings.
In recent years, the percentage of people with more savings than credit card debt has hovered between 52 and 55 percent, according to Bankrate.com, which published the most recent study on the topic.
“Consumers may be deleveraging, but the proportion of people with more emergency savings than credit card debt hasn’t changed much,” Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate.com’s senior financial analyst, said in a prepared statement. “Given the poll’s 3.5 percent margin of error, one can make the argument that consumers haven’t moved the needle at all over the past 24 months.”
Leaders with Bankrate also announced that its Financial Security Index dropped from 98.6 in January to 96.8 in February, which reverses the improvement that took place between December and January.
A reading of 100 means consumers’ feelings of financial security are unchanged from one year ago; the index has been below 100—indicative of deteriorating financial security—in 25 of the 27 months since its inception, according to a Bankrate news release.
The only component of the index that improved was net worth, which got a boost from rebounding home prices.
In the Chattanooga area, the median sales price rose 4 percent to $130,000 in January.
Job security, savings, debt and overall financial situation all declined, according to Bankrate's index.