Recovering from the Great Recession has been tough for many, and 57% of Americans reported feeling like they were still in a recession as of the second quarter. Millennials have been hit particularly hard by the recent turbulence in the economy, but roughly 70% believe their personal finances will be either good or excellent in the next year. They’ve also got their eyes on the future, as they’re most likely to put extra money into savings after they cover their living expenses.
Millennials, defined by Nielsen as consumers born between 1977 and 1995, now account for 24% of the U.S. population. The group is 77 million strong, define themselves by their use of technology, and many have adopted a DIY approach to managing their finances. And when we look at the striations within the Millennial generation, upscale Millennials (those earning more than $75,000/year) represent a notable pocket of opportunity for financial services providers.
Roughly 27% of Millennials fall into the upscale subset, and 15% of them actually earn more than $100,000 per year. In addition to their high incomes, upscale Millennials have amassed significantly more wealth than the overall generation. In fact, the median liquid wealth value (income producing assets) among upscale Millennials is $157,000, which is more than 11 times that of the generation as a whole.
Upscale Millennials are actively engaged in saving for the future. According to Nielsen Financial Track, these consumers are more than twice as likely as the average consumer to have variable-rate interest money market accounts and CD accounts. They’re also actively saving for retirement, as they’re 60% more likely than the average consumer to have an IRA and 87% more likely than the average consumer to have a 401(k) plan.
It’s also no secret that Millennials are active technology users. About 92% of Millennials own smartphones and roughly 61% own tablets. And because of their connection with technology, Millennials are more likely than the average consumer to bank on their PCs, smartphones and tablets, especially when making trades, opening new accounts, conducting research and making remote deposits. Upscale Millennials are even more engaged with tech for their financial needs, as they’re even more likely than their generation as a whole to conduct their primary banking activities online.
For additional insights into how Millennials are handling their finances, download Nielsen’s Millennials in 2015: Financial Deep Dive report.