Wednesday, October 22, 2008

U.S. Personal Savings

The latest U.S. government study on savings as a percentage of disposable income reflects a dismal savings rate of roughly 3%. For every $100 earned in disposable income, $3 is being saved for the future. Let's face it, that's not very good. At least the rate of savings is improving as it was hovering around only 1% for the past few years. This low rate of savings among consumers has contributed to higher levels of consumer debt.

In comparison, Japan and Germany enjoy at least a 10% savings rate as a percentage of their disposable income. This 10% rate of savings should be a goal for all of us.

Saving for a rainy day has never been more important than it is now. From a worldwide economy perspective, we have that rainy day upon us now. Payroll deduction or direct deposit is a great way to set aside money each paycheck for a savings plan. The Credit Union has various club accounts available that can be used as a "rainy day fund", "vacation fund", or whatever future financial need there is. Christmas Club accounts are also popular on an annual basis. The key is having a savings plan and sticking to it.

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