Technology

Americans still have financial goals, just not sure how they will reach them

(BPT) – If you have a vision for where you’d like to be financially in the coming years — but no clear idea of how to get there — you’re far from alone.

In fact, a recent survey by Wakefield Research and financial services company Digit (now a part of Oportun) found that 78% of American adults with financial goals have no strategy in place for reaching those goals.

Unfortunately, with challenges like student loan debt and rising inflation, financial planning is more difficult than it has ever been. These challenges may mean people are missing out on opportunities to build financial security and prosperity as they move through their lives, at any monthly income.

“Although most of us recognize the importance of smart financial planning, money management is challenging, complex and time-consuming,” notes Snigdha Kumar, head of product operations for Digit. “Consumers often think they aren’t in a position to take advantage of sound wealth-building strategies that will benefit them over time, when there are technology tools out there like Digit that can help them find ways to save and invest .”

That concerning trend is reflected in these other survey findings:

  • Young people are especially concerned about having no financial plans in place; those who say they’re worried include 95% of Gen Z-ers, 92% of millennials, 84% of Gen X-ers and 60% of baby boomers.
  • Nearly three in five respondents (58%) consider managing their money more mentally demanding than solving crossword puzzles.
  • Respondents spend an average four hours per month managing their money, and in spite of AI technology tools that could help them, 37% rely on pen-and-paper methods to do so — including 30% of Gen Z-ers and 28% of millennials.
  • A significant 44% reported being at least somewhat likely to dip into their savings during the first three months of 2022, and 27% said they were very likely to do so.
  • A full 13% of all respondents (and 19% of women respondents) say they have no savings at all from which to draw.

The good news is that Digit by Oportun can help you manage your money with confidence and less stress by intelligently (and automatically) budgeting, saving and investing according to your short-term needs and long-term goals. Digit uses advanced technology to analyze your full financial picture and make smart money decisions for you — with no need for additional tools or mental math. Available for download on Apple or Android devices, Digit members are setting aside more than $3,000 per year on average (based on daily average saves of all paying Digit members in 2021).

As Kumar points out, having a solid financial plan in place can mean more than just financial freedom. In fact, 92% of survey respondents report feeling less daily anxiety when their finances are under control. And 70% of those who directly manage their own finances (including those who use apps for that purpose) report having a positive relationship with money.

“There’s really no substitute for financial peace of mind,” Kumar advises. “And there’s no longer any need to spend hours each month trying to determine the best courses of action for managing your hard-earned money. AI technology can streamline that process on your behalf so you can spend that time and energy elsewhere, but still know you’re on a sound financial path.”

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