Millennials Are Quietly Becoming Better Savers Than Baby Boomers

Jun 20, 2017

Hold the avocado toast: a new survey suggests millennials may be more financially savvy than we thought.

Fifty percent of individuals aged 18-36 now say they have enough savings to cover at least three months' worth of expenses in the case of an emergency, according to a survey from banking information site Bankrate.com. That's a smidge higher than the 49 percent of people aged 56 and up who have at least three months of emergency savings.

Meanwhile, 27 percent of baby boomers say they have no emergency savings, compared to 25 percent of millennials.

“Having a front row seat for the financial crisis has instilled a savings discipline in many millennials that we haven’t seen in a few generations," Bankrate.com chief financial analyst Greg McBride said in an email. "They saw the impact it had on their parents and older siblings, and as a result have prioritized savings to a much greater extent than their predecessors.”

The survey findings don't necessarily indicate that millennials are better at saving than baby boomers, or that they have more money saved up than their parents' generation. Boomers are actually much more likely than millennials to have at least six months' worth of savings (38 percent vs. 23 percent). Yet more millennials than boomers have some emergency savings.

Bankrate.com 

The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, which conducted telephone interviews in early June with a nationally representative sample of 1,003 U.S. adults.

The data reveal that 31 percent of Americans have what's considered an adequate emergency savings fund—enough cash to cover six months' worth of expenses. That's the highest percentage since Bankrate started conducting this survey seven years ago, and a significant increase from 2015, when only 22 percent of those surveyed said they had six months' worth of emergency savings.

What's more, Americans whose net worth is higher than a year ago now outnumber those who say it’s lower by a ratio of 3 to 1, Bankrate reports.

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