American consumers getting a grip on debt
By Cara Henis | Published: November 12, 2009
More American consumers are paying down -- and even paying off -- their debts, according to a September survey commissioned by Wells Fargo & Co. and conducted by Ipsos Marketing, a marketing research company.
The quarterly survey of more than 2,000 U.S. homeowners found that approximately 20 percent of homeowners paid off their debt completely between July and September of 2009, up from just 9 percent the previous three months. The percentage of homeowners making strides toward lowering their overall level of debt also rose dramatically, reaching 42 percent, up from 30 percent in the previous quarter.
Homeowners are also getting serious about putting money away. Twenty-seven percent of homeowners increased their savings, up by about 8 percent from the previous quarter. And even those who haven't begun saving yet are feeling the urge to do so. About 55 percent of those asked said the yearning to save is a "top influence" on their spending habits.
Despite the emphasis on savings, consumers are more willing to finance family fun and vacations than they have been in the past, the report says. Yet most are doing so while holding steadfastly to a budget.
"Don't let your eyes get bigger than your wallet," a survey participant said. "Spend only what you are reasonably sure you can afford."
- Fraudsters creating synthetic identities from personal info on web – Synthetic identity fraud surges to $6 billion in 2016. Shift to EMV chip cards led fraudsters to seek out other scams, experts say. Auto lenders are a new target for fraudsters ...
- Big financial moves can add up to big rewards – If you're looking to buy or sell a house or refinance, don't miss out on the thousands of points you could earn just by going with a bank offering a big promotion ...
- Keeping tabs on your reward cards – If you're looking to maximize your card rewards, be sure to set up an organized system ahead of time to ensure you get the most rewards and never miss a payment ...