There seems to be some disagreement regarding Americans and their ability to plan and save for retirement.
While Bankrate.com tells us that American retirement savings are at an all-time high, alternate research indicates that Americans struggle to understand just how much retirement savings they need. What’s more, the demographic that seems to be struggling the most to prepare for retirement — baby boomers — also happens to be the group that may currently have the most pressing need for savvy financing planning.
The truth about Americans and their money is surely somewhere in between those results, which is why the best agents and advisors treat each client individually.
Regardless of the challenges inherent to one individual’s finances, there’s a tool that never fails to “make the medicine go down,” and that’s laughter.
The benefits of laughter go beyond enabling professionals to navigate difficult conversations. According to alternative medicine guru Dr. Joseph Mercola, laughing together can help people relax, build trust and forge stronger relationships. Laughter also stimulates memory retention, boosts our immune system and encourages healthy, recuperative sleep, according to an article posted at Mercola.com.
Keep reading for 8 jokes and memes about Americans and their money. Do you have a favorite joke about money? Why not pass on the gift of laughter by sharing your joke in the comments section below:
Building wealth may be as much of a state of mind as it is a strategy, particularly when you take into the account the cycle of poverty, or what economists characterize as a ”set of factors or events by which poverty, once started, is likely to continue unless there is outside intervention.” Some of your clients may be able to relate to the challenges of improving their station in life, much like comedian Louis C.K.:
“Have you ever been so broke that the bank starts charging you money for you not having enough money? … You never have negative money. That’s depressing … That means I don’t even have ‘no money.’ I don’t even have nothing.”
Healthcare may be the retirement expense for which Americans are least prepared. But for others, such as comedian Kevin Hart, above, it’s important to be clear and accurate about an individual’s financial circumstances:
“I stay in my financial lane, people. Let me explain to you I mean when I say this. Here’s what happens. You start to make money. And when you make money, you start to meet other people who make money. You want to hang out with these people, and naturally, you want to spend money like this people. But you don’t make the same kind of money that they other people make. That’s why you’ve got to stay in your lane.”
According to 2014 data from the Pew Research Center, roughly half of Americans could be considered middle class. Here’s comedian Chris Rock’s take on of the questionable ways that middle-class people may choose to spend their money:
“We all gotta work. Why? We spend money on things we used to be for free. Like water … But you know the craziest thing we spend money on? Ring tones. The phone used to ring for free! But bringgg-bringgg just wasn’t good enough for some of y’all: ‘I need a ring that expresses who I am!’”
What was true in 2013, according to Wells Fargo Middle Class Retirement Study, may still be true today. Those researchers found that middle-class Americans struggle to save because they tend to struggle to simply meet their day-to-day financial needs. Here’s how comedienne Amy Snowden says she decides how to prioritize her own living expenses:
“I might be broke, but I’m not cheap. I will spend the last money I have for food on my phone bill. Because I’d rather have nothing to eat than no one to call to talk about how hungry I am.”
According to the according to research by the Insured Retirement Institute, millennials, Gen Xers and baby boomers are equally unprepared for retirement. If you agree with the humor of comedian Joey Medina, one way to determine someone’s financial fitness is through casual chit-chat:
“The only thing that really divides people is money … People with money brag about how much money they spend. People without money brag about how money they save.”
Longtime finance professional George Hartman, speaking in 2014 at the Annual MDRT Meeting in Toronto, said the best advisors, “”recognize their strengths and weaknesses and then work to capitalize on the first and eliminate the second. They have also come to understand that, in the dynamic world of financial advice, perfection is an elusive goal.”
This joke, which is a variation on a classic that’s been retold a dozen different ways, may underscore the way most people feel about money:
“Have you heard about the new aftershave that drives people crazy? It smells like hundred dollar bills.”
Individuals who get serious about building wealth often take cues from successful American entrepreneurs. This is a demographic that tends to excel at protecting themselves from financial risk:
“You’ve got to spend money to make money … because counterfeiting equipment is really expensive.”
One threat to smart retirement planning is the presumption that adult children will be able to care for aging parents. But ever rising housing, food, medical and education expenses make this an idea that retirees can’t take to the bank. This commentary from comedian Tom Simmons makes it abundantly clear that many Americans continue to struggle to determine exactly how to divide their financial pie:
“I have a little boy, and I’m worried about his whole financial future. People are already giving me crap, they’re like you should have started saving for his college three years ago. That’s gonna be at least $30,000 a year. Thirty grand? Well he’s gonna be home-colleged then!” – Comedian Tom Simmons
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