The way the youngest generations shop and save is changing. In a survey conducted by GoBankingRates, which looked at the banking habits of Gen Z and Millennials, only one in five young Gen Z participants (ages 18-24) reported having a checking account. Of those who did, 40% of young Millennials and 34% of Gen Z report keeping a minimum balance of $100 or less. Only 26% of savers under 24 and 17% of those ages 35-44 maintained a minimum balance of $500, and less than 13% of all groups report keeping at least $2,000 in checking.
These low balances put younger adults at risk for credit problems and debt, since they will have little to fall back on in the case of unemployment, emergencies or just the growing cost of day-to-day expenses. Beyond emergency funds, the study pointed out that younger demographics are falling behind on investment opportunities that compound over time because they tend to gravitate toward emerging technologies and platforms instead of traditional banks.
Younger generations are in need of supplemental income opportunities to finance their futures, and in the meantime, companies wanting to make a positive difference for these demographics should invest in financial literacy training and money management skills for their employees.