Hand-to-Mouth, Paycheck to Paycheck

Broken piggy bank

Image: iStockPhoto.com

Yesterday it was reported that 76% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. According to Bankrate.com’s survey reported by CNN, “Fewer than one in four Americans have enough money in their savings account to cover at least six months of expenses, enough to help cushion the blow of a job loss, medical emergency or some other unexpected event, according to the survey of 1,000 adults. Meanwhile, 50% of those surveyed have less than a three-month cushion and 27% had no savings at all.”

Economists and analysts talk about the improved economy. Based on overall numbers we can see that — especially given the cliff the economy was shoved off when the recession began — things have improved markedly. The question becomes, ‘Who is benefitting?’

Isn’t it time to revisit a system that disproportionately affects the poor and middle class during downturns but exponentially benefits the rich during upticks? With just a few days before student loan rates are scheduled to double, now’s a good time to have a look. Without action, today’s students — tomorrow’s workers — will be added to the ranks of those who are able to live only paycheck to paycheck when all Stafford loan rates go back to the previously burdensome level.

{End of quick news bite!}