No Bueno: 47 Percent of Black Households Do NOT Have an Emergency Savings


Reported by Taylor Miller

Many Americans are faced with a lot of financial problems, and this is a fact for 47% of African-American families. According to Neighbor Works America, a survey conducted in its second-annual consumer finance report found that approximately 34% of Americans don’t have any emergency savings and 25% of Americans have only enough to support themselves for a month. The lack of savings affects Black families even more than others, with many of these families being in the low-income bracket and having no college education.

“There is a large disparity in the ability to save, with the highest percentages of households without any savings at all seen among African-American low income adults with lower incomes, and among those with a high school education or less,” the survey reports.

African-American families have the highest percentage of households without savings, at 47%. Hispanic families without savings are at 41%, and Caucasian families at 19%.

“Fifty percent of families who earned less than $40,000 a year admitted to not having a savings,” reports Black Enterprise. “There was a significant gap in comparison to families earning $40,000 to $59,000 a year (34%), homes earning $60,000 to $100,000 (21%), and those earning $100,000 and more (17%) who didn’t have any savings. Additionally, more family heads who only had a high school education or less (49%) were said to have no money set aside, versus family earners who had a college degree (18%).”

The Great Recession still hurts many pockets in African-American homes. While the economy is regaining ground and the unemployment rate is decreasing, many African-American families are still without an emergency fund due to everyday living expenses like housing, gasoline, and fluctuating grocery prices.

It is critical that families have enough funds saved for at least three months. Websites such as strive to empower African-American households by providing financial literacy and sharing resources that can assist with managing income and/or generating supplemental income from a business outside of one’s primary source of income.

Sources: 1, 2


Personal Finance