A majority of Americans are confident in their most recent big financial decision, such as picking a credit card, buying a home or car or refinancing a mortgage, and as many as 59 percent say they deserve an “A” or a “B” when it comes to their personal financial knowledge, according to a recent survey by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
However, this confidence may be somewhat misguided. Per the survey, 70 percent of Americans are worried about their personal finances, as 60 percent spend without a budget and 21 percent spend more than they did in the previous year.
Additionally, only six percent of Americans feel their student loans were a good investment, and more adults would advise against student loans than would recommend them. Of those who are repaying their own student loans or their children’s loans, 58 percent say they are unable to establish emergency or retirement savings or purchase a car as a result of that financial commitment.
This overconfidence may be the result of progressing success in credit card debt management. Although one in three households carry credit card balances from month to month, the percentage with balances below $2,500 has increased by four percentage points over last year, while the proportion of those with balances of $2,500 or more has decreased by the same amount. This may suggest that people who carry credit card debt are doing so with lower balances than they had in the past.
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