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Gen Z consumers in the US rely on parents as inflation squeezes budgets, study shows

People make their way through midtown New York at the start of a work day in New York, US, on June 18, 2024.
People make their way through midtown New York at the start of a work day in New York, US, on June 18, 2024. Photo : REUTERS/Maye-E Wong/Files

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Gen Z adults in the US face increasing financial challenges because of inflation and rising living costs, with 46 per cent relying on financial assistance from their parents and families, according to a report by Bank of America published on Wednesday.

Half of the 1,091 people aged 18 to 27 surveyed by the bank were not on track to buy a home in the next five years. Respondents were polled in April and May, with the survey weighted to meet national population benchmarks, including gender and race.

The survey showed 46 per cent of young people were unprepared to save for retirement and 40 per cent were not ready to start investing in the next five years.

“When I talk to young people, especially Gen Z, I tell them to set a budget and stick with it,” said Holly O’Neill, Bank of America’s president of retail banking.

Of those polled, 67 per cent are making lifestyle changes to offset growing living expenses. The shifts include budgeting, cutting back on restaurant meals, staying home instead of attending events, and shopping at cheaper grocery stores.

Emergency savings were another pain point, with 57 per cent of Gen Z respondents lacking enough money to cover three months of expenses.

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