Americans’ Top Goals — and Biggest Fears — for the Next 4 Years

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Party affiliation strongly influences whether or not you are optimistic about the next four years, a survey finds.

Americans have different financial outlooks for the next four years, and they vary largely depending on political party affiliation, a new survey shows.

Yet despite these differences, Americans seem to agree on their top financial goals and their biggest financial concerns for the next four years under the leadership of Donald Trump, who will be inaugurated as president Friday.

Credit reporting bureau Experian surveyed 1,000 Americans of voting age regarding financial topics after the November election.

About one-third of respondents (37 percent) felt Americans’ financial status would improve over the next four years, as opposed to staying the same or declining.

Republicans and independents were more optimistic, with 77 percent and 44 percent, respectively, feeling Americans’ financial status will improve. Democrats were more pessimistic, with only 19 percent feeling that way.

When it comes to Americans’ biggest financial goals for the next four years, however, the results reflected more agreement.

For example, saving more money was by far the No. 1 financial goal, cited by 41 percent of survey respondents.

No other goal came close. The No. 2 goal — the related goal of being a smarter shopper — was cited by 12 percent of respondents.

Americans’ biggest financial concerns for the next four years revolve around a similar theme. The No. 1 concern is not having enough money saved to retire, cited by 21 percent of respondents.

The No. 2 concern is the related fear of encountering financial setbacks due to medical costs, which was named by 12 percent.

Americans’ top financial goals for the next four years, according to Experian’s survey, are:

  • Save more (cited by 41 percent)
  • Be a smarter shopper (12 percent)
  • Pay my credit card debt off (10 percent)
  • Pay off a credit card debt completely (8 percent)
  • Pay my full credit card balance (5 percent)
  • Not open anymore credit cards (3 percent)
  • Check my credit score more often (2 percent)
  • Enlist a financial adviser (2 percent)
  • Check my credit report more often (2 percent)
  • Get credit monitoring/theft protection (1 percent)

Americans’ top financial concerns for the next four years are:

  • Not having enough saved to retire (cited by 21 percent)
  • Financial setbacks due to future medical costs (12 percent)
  • Not becoming financially independent (12 percent)
  • Not being able to support a family (12 percent)
  • Not being able to pay off my debt (9 percent)
  • Getting my identity stolen (8 percent)
  • Losing my savings in the stock market (5 percent)
  • Not being able to fund my children’s education (4 percent)
  • Not being able to support my parents as they age (3 percent)

If you’re concerned about your financial future, be sure to visit the Money Talks News Solutions Center. You’ll find assistance with everything from building a better budget to building your Social Security income.

What would you cite as your No. 1 financial goal or fear for the next four years? Sound off below or on our Facebook page.

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