As a result of the financial crisis, Americans have permanently changed their attitudes toward saving money and are more focused on paying down debt and controlling finances, according to a recent study by Synovate.
In addition, Americans are re-evaluating even the smallest of decisions to ensure they get as much value from their purchases as possible, Synovate found.
One in four Americans (25%) say they are glad for the economic crisis, in that it has helped them recognize their priorities. Some 52% of Americans have permanently changed their attitudes to the importance of saving money, while 42% are looking forward to spending freely again. However, 59% of Americans say they will do their best to not revert to pre-recession spending levels.
Below, additional findings from the study.
Paying With Cash
More than half (55%) of Americans say they are using cash less for making payments, possibly because they have less to spend in a tight economy. Similarly, 48% say they're writing checks less, and 34% say they are using debit cards less.
However, 21% say they are using cash more and 34% say they are using debit cards more, in what may be a reflection of consumers' attempts to control spending and reduce credit card debt. In fact, four in ten consumers (38%) say they've reduced credit use.
Overall, Americans have postponed buying and have spent less in the past six months:
- 22% have been holding off buying a new TV, computer, or other large appliance.
- 16% say they have postponed or spent less on purchasing a car.
- 10% have delayed or spent less on a vacation.
Spending changes have become personal as well. Some 2% of Americans have delayed having a baby in the past six months, while 7% of Americans have postponed surgery.
Of those who delayed a major purchase, changed a life decision, or spent less, 45% did so because they didn't have enough money; 11% were waiting for a bargain; and 11% thought it just seemed wrong to spend a lot at the moment.
Playing It Safe
To gauge financial priorities, Synovate asked respondents what they would do if $1,000 landed in their lap today:
- More than one-third of Americans (35%) say they would use their $1,000 windfall to pay down debt.
- 23% would put the money in the bank.
- 21% would spend the money on necessities.
- Only 7% would spend it on something fun.
Over half (51%) of Americans agree that their trust in financial institutions has declined dramatically, and 57% believe that more government regulation is needed for the financial industry. "Only" 28%, however, say they will not invest in the stock market in the future, and 22% say they will not invest in property.
About the data: Findings are from Synovate's In:fact survey on money and finance, conducted in August 2009,
surveying more than 11,400 respondents across 16 markets: Australia,
Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, New
Zealand, Russia, Serbia, South Africa, Spain, Taiwan, UK, and the USA. In the US, respondents totaled 503.
Continue reading "Americans Altering Attitudes About Money" ... Read the full article
MarketingProfs provides thousands of marketing resources, entirely free!
Simply subscribe to our newsletter and get instant access to how-to articles, guides, webinars and more for nada, nothing, zip, zilch, on the house...delivered right to your inbox! MarketingProfs is the largest marketing community in the world, and we are here to help you be a better marketer.
You may like these other MarketingProfs articles related to Customer Behavior:
- What B2B Tech Marketers Want From Martech Solutions
- How to Push Customers Down the Brand Loyalty Funnel
- Why People Really Do What They Do: 'Primal Brain' Author Tim Ash on Marketing Smarts [Podcast]
- Do Customers Trust You? Six Tips for Earning Brand Trust in 2021
- This Is Your Brain on Marketing: Nancy Harhut on Marketing Smarts [Podcast]