Wells Fargo: Millennials Remain Optimistic about Finances

Millennials remain generally optimistic about their finances, with most believing they will do the same or better than their parents and 55 percent considering themselves in a successful financial position; 94 percent consider themselves “financial adults.” The findings, included in a Wells Fargo/GfK survey released this week, echo previous findings in Wells Fargo surveys.

However, the report did find indicators of financial stress among those aged 22 to 35, with just under half saying they live paycheck-to-paycheck. Student loan debt continues to drive financial worries; 48 percent of millennials carry some student debt, with a median debt burden of $20,000, and of those, 71 three-quarters say their debt is “unmanageable.” They report difficulty saving, with 38 percent of millennials building an emergency fund is a high priority and only 13 percent saying they’ve achieved it.

Paying down debt remains a top goal for millennials when they get extra money. If given a raise, 32 percent said they will pay back consumer debt and 21 percent said they would put it toward student loan debt. Meanwhile, 27 percent said they would save more for retirement and 16 percent said they would put it into short-term savings.