In a recent survey, CashNetUSA asked Americans what they would do with an extra paycheck in the holiday season. With a tally of 2,014 adults aged 18 and older included, the results of the survey can be considered mostly positive, including a mere five percent of respondents who say they would spend any extra holiday cash on themselves.
With the universal focus on holiday spending, the CashNetUSA survey was motivated by a desire to reveal the intricacies of the average American’s spending habits over the course of the holiday season, particularly in regards to unexpected funds. This is certainly a hot topic for marketers, but for CashNetUSA, focusing on holiday spending could offer insight into their customers’ habits — insights that could lead to an improved product and an easier process for CashNetUSA users.
In general, the survey showed that Americans are still sensitive to the state of the economy, and that for many, spending wisely is a top priority. “The survey suggests that Americans are still experiencing a volatile economy and would use the new found cash to stabilize their situation rather than spending it frivolously,” according to Megan Staton, director of marketing for CashNetUSA.
While five percent of Americans say they would spend the cash on themselves — including seven percent of men and three percent of women — 90 percent of respondents say they would use the extra funds a bit more wisely.
- 28 percent would pay bills or loans
- 26 percent would buy gifts for family members
- 23 percent would save the money
- 7 percent would spend it on everyday expenses
- 6 percent would do something else with it
Holiday spending can be a tricky venture, particularly at the end of the year when so many people are allowing themselves to splurge in those final days before strict New Year’s resolutions take hold. While this has often led to looser holiday budgets and added holiday debt, it seems that far more Americans are coming to terms with their financial situations. Awareness of financial realities and spending habits is one of the first steps toward financial security, and it certainly appears that more Americans are focused on their own realities and habits.
This shift toward money consciousness remains one of the few silver linings of a floundering economy. Says Staton, “Amidst the challenging economic environment, it’s encouraging to know that Americans would carefully prioritize when choosing how to spend unexpected cash.”