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Survey Finds Millennials & Gen Zers Postpone Financial Planning Due to Complexity & Time

A recent survey conducted by Logica Research for financial-services company Charles Schwab has uncovered a significant trend among millennials and Gen Zers, indicating their reluctance to engage in financial planning due to its perceived complexity and time-consuming nature.

Representing a cross-section of the US population, the survey polled 1,000 adults, shedding light on the contrasting views of younger and older generations when it comes to wealth and finance.

The findings unveiled a striking similarity between Gen Z and millennial respondents, both expressing hesitance to embark on financial planning endeavors due to the perceived demands of time, effort, and financial commitment. While 29% of younger respondents claimed to lack the time required to develop a formal financial plan, only 9% of boomers shared this sentiment.

Moreover, over a quarter of Gen Zers and millennials surveyed confessed that the process seemed “too complicated” to undertake. Surprisingly, approximately two-thirds of all respondents admitted to lacking a formal financial plan, with a quarter of them having no plan at all. Though the breakdown by age was not specified, a separate study conducted by Credit Karma in April found that many participants were unable to calculate their net worth, with nearly a third reporting a net worth of $0 or a negative figure.

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Within the boomer demographic (aged 58 to 75), more than half of the respondents stated their lack of a documented formal financial plan was due to their perception of not having enough money to necessitate one. This sentiment was echoed by 38% of Gen Zers and millennials, suggesting a difference in financial priorities.

Notably, Gen Z respondents cited a lack of major life events as the primary reason for their delayed financial planning. Charles Schwab categorized Gen Z as individuals aged 21 to 25, a group less likely to have children, save for a wedding, or own property.

The financial impact of the pandemic on Gen Z’s future prospects was highlighted in a 2020 Bank of America Research report, drawing parallels to the Great Recession’s effect on millennials’ financial and professional trajectories. Gen Z has had to navigate the challenges of remote high school and college graduations, followed by an unpredictable job market. As the US experienced waves of lockdown-induced layoffs in 2020, the tech industry witnessed further rounds of job cuts. According to a recent PYMENTS survey, 66% of Gen Z respondents revealed that they were living paycheck to paycheck.

Interestingly, despite their lack of financial planning, younger generations exhibited a stronger emphasis on the value of wealth compared to older cohorts. The survey revealed that two-thirds of boomers prioritize time over money, while 56% of millennials held the same view. Moreover, when considering wealth, Gen Zers and millennials were nearly twice as likely as boomers to equate it with the ability to afford a similar lifestyle as their friends. Additionally, Gen Zers were approximately four times more likely than boomers to compare their lifestyle with that of their family and friends on social media, as outlined in Charles Schwab’s report.

Also Read: Ramit Sethi Challenges Conventional Wisdom: Renting Trumps Buying a Home for Wealth Building

These findings shed light on the intricate relationship between financial planning, generational differences, and societal influences. As younger generations face unique economic challenges, their attitudes toward wealth and financial preparedness provide valuable insights into their evolving priorities and aspirations.

Ricardo Anderson
Ricardo Anderson
Ricardo is someone with whom you can ask and talk about finance and its importance in life. A part-time cook, enthusiast, and football player, he loves to read and write on the latest updates in finance.


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