Only 39% of Americans can afford a $1,000 emergency expense

Just 39% of Americans would be able to cover an unexpected $1,000 expense, according to a...

Posted: Jan 12, 2021 9:09 AM
Updated: Jan 13, 2021 1:50 PM

Just 39% of Americans would be able to cover an unexpected $1,000 expense, according to a new report from Bankrate.com.

That's down from 2020, when 41% of people said they could cover a $1,000 cost with their savings.

Another 38% would need to borrow money, either by using a credit card or borrowing from family to pay for a surprise cost such as a medical bill or emergency repair.

"The precarious state of Americans' emergency savings has been further set back by the pandemic, with nearly as many needing to borrow to cover a $1,000 unplanned expense as those that can pay for it from savings," says Greg McBride, Bankrate.com's chief financial analyst.

Many households have been able to stockpile savings because they can work from home or have eliminated travel or entertainment spending. But for millions of others, job losses and pay cuts have sent them on a precarious downward slide.

Older people are more likely to be able to pay for an unexpected expense, with only a third of Millennials (aged 24-39) able to afford it. That's compared with 46% of Gen Xers (aged 40-55) and 45% of Baby Boomers (aged 56-74).

Handling emergency expenses is hardest for lower income households. Only 21% of those earning less than $30,000 a year can cover emergency costs with savings, while 58% of those earning $75,000 or more per year have the money available.

The lowest-earning households were also the most likely to borrow from family or friends or take out a personal loan.

But many Americans remain optimistic for 2021, the report found, with 44% of people reporting that they expect their finances will get better this year. Some people, 40%, expect their personal financial situation will stay about the same, while 14% expect their finances to get worse.

Older Americans are less optimistic about the future. Just 28% of those aged 66 and older expect a better financial situation this year. That's compared to 53% of Millennials.

"Widespread vaccine availability brings the hope of normalcy we've all been craving, and optimism that this year will be better for our finances," explains McBride. "For many households, 2021 will be a year of trying to right the financial ship."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 259117

Reported Deaths: 5668
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17331186
Hinds16373328
Harrison13731199
Rankin10854217
Jackson10557187
Lee8922141
Madison8335166
Jones6483112
Forrest6038120
Lauderdale5965187
Lowndes5425118
Lafayette503193
Lamar490865
Washington4826124
Bolivar4024109
Oktibbeha397681
Panola374680
Pontotoc369855
Monroe3591105
Warren3569100
Union348063
Marshall347769
Neshoba3413152
Pearl River3329103
Leflore3059107
Lincoln299386
Sunflower288271
Hancock282559
Tate274362
Alcorn267454
Itawamba265260
Pike264679
Scott250847
Prentiss248252
Yazoo247356
Tippah244450
Copiah243949
Coahoma242254
Simpson238368
Leake232966
Grenada220671
Covington215072
Marion215073
Adams207870
Wayne203232
Winston202667
George201939
Newton195044
Attala194659
Tishomingo191661
Chickasaw185744
Jasper174438
Holmes169168
Clay161335
Tallahatchie148235
Stone145921
Clarke141762
Calhoun137621
Smith122725
Yalobusha119134
Walthall112836
Noxubee111423
Greene111029
Montgomery110136
Carroll105321
Lawrence103217
Perry102831
Amite98826
Webster93924
Tunica87421
Claiborne86625
Jefferson Davis85827
Benton83323
Humphreys83324
Kemper78420
Quitman6969
Franklin67115
Choctaw61213
Wilkinson58825
Jefferson55419
Sharkey44017
Issaquena1596
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 429655

Reported Deaths: 6283
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson63040956
Mobile30794557
Madison27486201
Tuscaloosa20996268
Montgomery19352315
Shelby18833120
Baldwin16653184
Lee12749102
Morgan12389119
Etowah11861176
Calhoun11292201
Marshall10290113
Houston8746156
Limestone813276
Cullman8125106
Elmore7999104
DeKalb776599
Lauderdale768698
St. Clair7651121
Talladega6309108
Walker5954174
Jackson586341
Colbert539873
Blount537683
Autauga525755
Coffee450456
Dale402981
Franklin369948
Russell340711
Chilton338966
Covington332668
Escambia326043
Dallas308896
Chambers293170
Clarke287833
Tallapoosa2641107
Pike255230
Marion248953
Lawrence246649
Winston229535
Bibb218847
Geneva205446
Marengo202829
Pickens197531
Hale179542
Barbour176036
Fayette172928
Butler170858
Cherokee161930
Henry156523
Monroe149818
Randolph142135
Washington139126
Clay127645
Crenshaw121544
Cleburne119023
Lamar119021
Macon118637
Lowndes112036
Wilcox105121
Bullock101128
Perry99019
Conecuh95720
Sumter89626
Greene76623
Coosa61015
Choctaw51624
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