Story at a glance
- A new report has found more than half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
- The study was conducted by LendingClub Corporation in partnership with PYMNTS.com for its seventh edition of the Reality Check: Paycheck-To-Paycheck research series released Thursday.
- Sixty-four percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck as of January 2022 across all income brackets.
A new report has found more than half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
The study conducted by LendingClub Corporation in partnership with PYMNTS.com found that Americans across all income brackets are increasingly living paycheck to paycheck, including those with six-figure incomes.
Sixty-four percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck as of January 2022, the study found — a 3 percent increase from December 2021 and a 12 percent increase from April 2021.
The survey found that among those earning more than 100,000, 48 percent said they were living paycheck to paycheck, an increase from 42 percent in December 2021. The number has increased since May 2021 when 39 percent of six-figure earners said the same.
In fact, the number of those earning between $50,000 and $100,000 who are living paycheck to paycheck is rising.
In May 2021, 53 percent of earners in this financial bracket reported living paycheck to paycheck, compared to 67 percent in January 2022.
However, the realities of those living paycheck to paycheck also differ, with the data broken down into two categories: those living paycheck to paycheck comfortably and those living paycheck to paycheck with difficulty.
According to the study, those who were living paycheck to paycheck but were able to pay their bills was 42 percent in January 2022, compared to 22 percent who struggled to pay their monthly bills.
But the disparity in annual income did come into play when evaluating the differences in savings among both those struggling to pay bills and those who were not. People earning more than $100,000 and living paycheck to paycheck who reported difficulties paying their bills had an average savings of $11,168, compared to $12,881 in those who weren’t struggling with bills.
Yet, those earning $50,000 to $100,000 per year and living paycheck to paycheck with difficulties had an average savings of $2,360, compared to $7,273 for those who didn’t have issues. In stark contrast, people earning less than $50,000 per year living paycheck to paycheck who struggled to pay bills only reported an average savings of $788, compared to $4,369 for those who weren’t having issues with bills.
In the case of an emergency expense of $400 or more, more than 50 percent of people earning $50,000 to $100,000 per year and more than $100,000 per year, respectively, would be able to pay it using savings, compared to only 38.5 percent of those earning less than $50,000.
Among those earning more than $100,000, 23 percent living paycheck to paycheck are struggling to pay their bills and would not be able to pay a $400 emergency expense. Meanwhile, 38 percent of those earning between $50,000 and $100,000 said the same.
“With inflation up 7.5 percent in the last 12 months, consumers of all income brackets are struggling to find a way to make ends meet,” Anuj Nayar, financial health officer at LendingClub, said in a press release. “Every day we see Americans relying on credit cards as a crutch, which is a horrible way to borrow money if you don’t intend to pay off the entire balance at the end of every month.”
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