(The Hill) — Most Americans are optimistic about what the next year will bring for them financially, with two-thirds saying they believe they’ll be better off in 2024, according to a new survey from Fidelity Investments.
Younger generations were more likely to say they’ll be better off financially next year. Just over three-quarters of Generation Z respondents and 79 percent Millennials said as much, compared to 64 percent of Generation X and 52 percent of Baby Boomers.
However, over one-third of Americans in the survey said they are currently in a worse financial situation compared to the same time last year, with the majority attributing the decline to inflation and cost of living increases.
Inflation was the top reason that Americans said they were not able to meet their financial goals this year, and it remains one of their top financial concerns for 2024, the Fidelity survey found.
Some 40 percent said that inflation’s impact on their day-to-day expenses and saving was their primary concern for next year, followed by unexpected expenses at 37 percent and economic uncertainty at 33 percent.
For those who suffered a financial setback in the past year, 45 percent said they had to dip into their emergency fund, according to the survey.
“With the number of Americans tapping into their emergency savings after a year of financial stressors and setbacks, it’s not surprising to see them look forward to new, brighter chapters in 2024,” Kelly Lannan, senior vice president of Emerging Customers at Fidelity Investments, said in a press release.
“Encouragingly, it’s great to see so many taking a practical and confident outlook for the year ahead while they navigate choppy financial waters and fine-tune their financial wellness habits and savings goals,” she added.
Since inflation reached a 40-year high of 9.1 percent last summer, it has eased significantly, falling to 3.2 percent as of October, according to Commerce Department data.
The economy has also remained surprisingly resilient in the face of the Federal Reserve’s repeated interest rate hikes, especially considering the widespread recession predictions that economists were making last year.
However, most Americans aren’t feeling particularly positive about the state of the economy, with a majority in a recent Bankrate survey saying they feel the country is currently experiencing a recession.
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