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Posted on April 22, 2009

Money Management International survey shows 44% of Gen Y are saving more

Money Management International (MMI), the nation’s largest full service credit and debt counseling and education organization, released a survey with surprising findings: Generation Y is leading the nation in saving money. According to MMI’s 2009 Financial Literacy Survey, which measured current spending and saving trends in today’s indeterminate economic climate, 44 percent of Gen Ys are beefing up their savings accounts. Of the nation as a whole, 36 percent of Americans say they are saving more.

Generation Y, or those born in the 1980s and '90s, have been a bit of a challenge for some older employers. Characterized by their sense of entitlement, casual clothes, Blackberries and high expectations, Gen Y has presented Generation X and Baby Boomer employers with the problem of managing and retaining them as employees. According to a recent USA Today article, Generation Yers don't expect to stay in a job, or even a career, for too long. They believe in their own self worth and value enough that they're not shy about trying to change the companies they work for or change jobs all together when they don’t feel challenged. However, regardless of generational differences, Gen Y exudes some admirable characteristics that are helping them navigate the current economic climate.

Gen Y are educated and technologically savvy. When asked the question of who is responsible for their own financial education, 33 percent of Americans claimed themselves as the responsible party. For tech-savvy Millennials, access to information-filled sites like www.financialiteracymonth.org and a slew of online budgeting and financial tools are helping to boost their brain power and their bank accounts.

Gen Y are optimistic in the face of adversity. Gen Y appears to believe in the power of positive thinking. The survey shows that this age range sees a silver lining around the current economic situation significantly more than other groups. The most frequently mentioned benefits derived from adversity are spending more time with family and friends, eating healthier and, of course, saving more money.

“Even in these tough economic times, remember to pay yourself first,” said Cate Williams, vice president of financial literacy at MMI. “Looking at your savings account as another bill that must be paid may feel overwhelming when the bills are piling up, but you’ll be pleased with your decision if an emergency were to occur; after all – having a savings cushion could prevent a financial setback from becoming a financial disaster.”

Williams suggests taking a cue from Gen Y by using online resources to your advantage. “They offer great tips and creative solutions for making your money stretch," Williams added. 

About Money Management International

Money Management International (MMI) is a nonprofit, full-service credit-counseling agency, providing confidential financial guidance, financial education, and counseling services; including housing counseling, bankruptcy counseling and education, and debt management assistance. MMI has been helping consumers trim their expenses, develop a spending plan, and repay debts since 1958. Counseling is available by appointment in branch offices and 24/7 by telephone and Internet. Services are available in English or Spanish. To learn more, call 800.432.7310 or visit www.MoneyManagement.org.