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CNBC + Acorns Invest in You survey


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Americans are beginning to feel the pinch of tight budgets, as the pandemic coronavirus continues and government aid from the start of the crisis ends.

According to A.I., one-quarter of Americans felt financial stress all year. CNBC + Acorns Invest in You survey, conducted by Momentive. The online survey of nearly 4,000 adults was conducted March 23-24.  

Other 41% stated they sometimes feel financially stressed, while 33% reported that they were rarely or never feeling financially stressed during the previous year.

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As Americans face the most severe inflation rate in 40 years, rising prices have been the primary cause of financial stress. Many people were unprepared to deal with these price hikes, said Susan Greenhalgh, an accredited financial counselor who runs Mind Your Money in Hope, Rhode Island.

She said that “we don’t know how to handle them” and added that it is always good to keep your eyes on how much you spend.

Budget shifting

Financial stress seems to be affecting those who have lower incomes most.

The survey revealed that nearly 60% of those with a household income below $50,000 felt more stressed now than they did a year ago.

This is compared with 53% of households earning $50,000 to $100,000 each year, and 45% who make more than $100,000.

People who have the greatest need may be forced to take some measures. serious choices with their finances, said Tania Brown, an Atlanta-based certified financial planner and founder of She recommends prioritizing the essentials before anything else — that includes, rent, food, utilities and basic medical expenses.

“In this climate, legally other bills may have to go by the wayside“Yes,” she replied. “Depending upon your income, you are fighting to preserve your home.”

It was also recommended that she reach out to creditors and look for programs that could lower the price of utilities based on her income. You might also want to examine other monthly costs and subscriptions, such as internet or cable.

Budget review must be more proactive.

Tania Brown

founder of

GasBuddy and carpooling are just a couple of ways you can save money on gas.

You can make additional changes to reduce your bills. For example, you might use heat and air conditioner less. opting for meals without meat.

In addition, if a family must dip into their emergency savings to stay afloat right now, Brown said they shouldn’t feel bad — the point of having such an account is for such situations.

She said, “You are using it as intended.”

Prices may keep rising

Most Americans don’t seem to be as concerned about rising inflation pressures. Still, they might be in a very different financial situation now due to rising prices — some 52% said they’re under more financial stress now than they were a year ago.

Brown said that because the prices of goods are likely to go up in the short-term, it is important to regularly review your budget. This is due to the speed at which the market changes.

She said, “You need to be more proactive about reviewing your budget and looking at last month’s spending because it may change.” Give yourself more room to maneuver.

This could mean you have to save less over the next few months. You might also need to rethink your financial goals and look for higher-paying jobs.

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Disclosure: Comcast Ventures is an investor in NBCUniversal. Acorns.