Why so few Americans have the savings to weather this pandemic

Alli Fam and Kai Ryssdal Apr 22, 2020
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Keystone/Getty Images

Why so few Americans have the savings to weather this pandemic

Alli Fam and Kai Ryssdal Apr 22, 2020
Keystone/Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Weathering the COVID-19 crisis has a lot to do with having money in the bank. And for many Americans, saving is a challenge.

According to a survey conducted by Bankrate in January, just four in 10 U.S. adults (41%) would cover the cost of a $1,000 car repair or emergency room visit using savings.

Derek Thompson, staff writer at the Atlantic, joined “Marketplace” host Kai Ryssdal to discuss the reasons American saving rates are so low.

“For the vast majority of the bottom 50%, their wealth is tied up in their homes,” Thompson told Ryssdal. There are other cultural and economic factors at play, including the expense of essential services like health care and education in the U.S. Income inequality, combined with pressure to spend money on certain goods, Thompson noted, is uniquely strong in the U.S.

Click the audio player above to hear the interview.

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