Wealthy Americans Say Financial Worries Hurt Their Mental Health

(Bloomberg)-- That’s one of the findings in a Bank of America  survey of more than 1,000 people in the U.S. who have enough investable money to qualify as “mass affluent.”

Financial concerns affected the mental health of 59% of respondents, while 56% said their physical health has been hurt.

Younger people, in the millennial and Generation Z age brackets, reported a bigger impact from money matters than their Gen X and baby boomer counterparts.

Financial awareness is rising among young people because of social media, and that can make them savvier about money matters -- and more stressed out, said Aron Levine, head of consumer banking and investments at Bank of America.

“How do I pay off my debt, I really want to buy a home, I still want to take a vacation, I’ve got to deal with potentially aging parents -- and then forget about retirement, I don’t even know how to think about that,” Levine said in an interview, citing some major financial concerns people face.

“That’s a very daunting task.”

Despite the prevalence of money worries, 44% of Gen Zers and 48% of millennials say they believe they’ll be millionaires one day.

Here are some of the survey’s other findings:

  • Many Americans are trying to bolster their financial standing, with 45% of respondents saying they’re working to improve their credit score, 43% trying to pay down their credit-card debt and 35% establishing an emergency fund.
  • They’re also holding off on big expenses to pay down debt, with 43% forgoing a vacation, 37% putting off a car purchase, 30% delaying home buying and 19% waiting to have children.
  • Consumers report using apps to help save and manage money, with 71% of respondents using them for consumer banking, 65% for money transfers, 63% for managing personal finances and 57% for automated investment.

Gen Z respondents in the online survey, conducted from April 17 to May 9, had investable assets of $50,000 to $250,000, or investable assets of $20,000 to $50,000 and annual income of at least $50,000. For those 24 or older, respondents had investable assets of $50,000 to $250,000.


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