The FINANCIAL — Americans are setting aside more money for emergencies than any other saving needs, according to new surveys released by Visa Inc.
Saving for emergencies and a rainy day (30 percent) topped the list of what Americans set aside money for, followed by retirement (20 percent) and education (10 percent). Overall, sixty-six percent of Americans surveyed said they set aside some amount every month for major expenses.
Additionally, Visa surveys in seventeen regional markets found that Los Angeles area respondents set aside the most for emergencies (39 percent), followed by Orlando (34 percent) and San Antonio (33 percent). New York City, Chicago and the state of Vermont ranked near the bottom, with each of these areas reporting only 22 percent of residents saving for emergencies.
The Visa surveys come on the heels of recently released figures by the U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis showing that America’s personal saving rate, as a percentage of disposable personal income, had climbed from 1.0 percent in September to 2.4 percent in October.
“Having money set aside for financial emergencies is always a good idea and is particularly important in today’s economic climate,” said Jason Alderman, Director of Financial Education at Visa Inc. “The best New Year’s resolution you can make is to start setting aside money on a regular basis to cover the unexpected.”