New Survey Finds Americans Optimistic on Financial Future; Household Income Level Doesn’t Change Outlook

Posted February 27 2018
by Media Relations

TYSONS, Va., Feb. 27, 2018 – PenFed Credit Union, the nation’s second largest federal credit union, today announced results from a nationwide survey on consumer behaviors and opinions related to savings. The survey, conducted by nationally recognized market research firm McLaughlin & Associates on behalf of PenFed, found that while three out of four adults feel financially insecure, the majority (59%) is optimistic that their financial situation will get better over the next year. Additionally, the survey found that consumers’ current household income is not a determining factor in their outlook. Households with incomes above $60,000 are only a bit more optimistic than those below $60,000 (61% to 58%).

McLaughlin & Associates conducted the survey from February 15 – February 21, 2018, on behalf of PenFed Credit Union. The survey was conducted online among a cross section of 1,000 adults age 18 and over, and has an accuracy of +/- 3.1% at a 95% confidence interval. It found:

  • Adults without a college education (16% very secure/84% vulnerable) are more vulnerable than college graduates (31% very secure/69% vulnerable).
  • Adults over 44 (19% very secure/81% vulnerable) feel more financially insecure than younger adults (26% very secure/74% vulnerable).
  • Younger adults under 44 are much more optimistic than older adults (70% to 50%).
  • Financial security is highest among adults who have a personal financial advisor (41% very secure/59% vulnerable).
  • Adults who have automatic savings (36% very secure/64% vulnerable) are more financially confident than adults who have a banking app (17% very secure/83% vulnerable) or no banking technology (14% very secure/86% vulnerable).
  • Women (18% very secure/82% vulnerable) more so than men (28% very secure/72% vulnerable) feel financially vulnerable.

“To jump start your savings, always start with a plan,” said Stephen Simpson, CFP®, AAMS®, Vice President, Affiliated Businesses with PenFed. Mr. Simpson leads PenFed’s Wealth Management Division including Investment Management services and Trust and Fiduciary Services. “Start thinking about what you want and need to save for, and make a plan now to create a fiscally secure future for you and your family. PenFed’s mission is to help its members do better financially. We encourage you to take control of your finances and take the pledge to save more with America and Military Saves Week.”

PenFed, which has more than 1.6 million members, is participating in America Saves Week by working to educate consumers about the importance of saving. America Saves Week is coordinated by America Saves and the America Savings Education Council. Additionally, PenFed is participating in Military Saves Week by encouraging its members to save in its branches on military bases. Military Saves Week is coordinated by America Saves and the Consumer Federation of America in partnership with the Department of Defense. The Week is an annual opportunity for organizations to promote good savings behavior and a chance for individuals to assess their own saving status.

Each day during America and Military Saves Week, a new theme is introduced to educate consumers. During the course of America and Military Saves Week, PenFed will continue to release survey findings and tips from PenFed financial experts related to savings.

Visit to learn more about how you can save with PenFed Credit Union. Click here to take the America Saves Week pledge. Click here to take the Military Saves Week pledge. 


About PenFed Credit Union

Established in 1935 as the War Department Credit Union, PenFed Credit Union is America’s second-largest federal credit union, serving over 1.6 million members worldwide with more than $23 billion in assets. Our long-standing mission has been to provide superior financial services in a cost-effective manner, while being responsive to members’ needs. PenFed Credit Union offers market-leading mortgages, automobile loans, credit cards, student loans, checking, certificates, and a wide range of other financial services with members’ interests always in mind.  PenFed Credit Union serves a diverse population, and no military service is required to join.  PenFed Credit Union offers many paths to membership, including numerous employee groups and association affiliations. PenFed Credit Union is federally insured by the NCUA and is an equal housing lender. To learn more about PenFed Credit Union, visit, like us on Facebook and follow us @PenFed on Twitter. Interested in working for PenFed? Check us out on LinkedIn. We are proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.




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