The COVID-19 pandemic hit many Americans hard, yet 81% feel in control of their financial situation, according to a recent survey from the financial services firm Edward Jones.
Forty-six percent of study participants say they were confident in their ability to withstand or quickly recover from difficult financial situations — what Edward Jones refers to as their financial resilience.
“It’s encouraging to see that Americans feel confident in their financial standing given the tumultuous year 2020 presented,” Edward Jones principal Vanessa Okwuraiwe said in a statement. “Even so, financial stability requires careful planning, goal-setting and the flexibility to revise that strategy if and when situations arise.”
Morning Consult, a global data intelligence firm, conducted the survey in early December among a national sample of 2,220 adults.
Seven in 10 survey participants with a strategy said they felt financially stable and resilient.
The pandemic and other challenges last year prompted many individual investors to rework their financial strategies. Survey respondents said they were prioritizing and saving more for personal education opportunities, marriage and the birth of a child.
At the same time, 12% reported that they had postponed buying a house, 10% changing careers and 6% retirement. Although they are still saving for those future moments, many are repurposing funds to cover current unexpected expenses as a result of the pandemic.
Fifty-three percent of respondents said they are actively contributing to their emergency funds, with 23% noting that this is the first access point for immediate cash in the event of financial hardship.
To meet immediate financial needs, 20% said they would depend on cash and loans from family, and 12% would look to friends. That number increases to 31% for Generation Z respondents who said they would access funds through a loan from family or friends.