Friday, April 23rd, 2010

This Just In: Young People Might Be A Bit Capricious With Their Spending

USA Today would like you to know that Generation Y (which is now defined as "anyone born from the 1980s to 2000," in case you're keeping score), for all its millennial optimism, is overall pretty broke! Only 58% of them pay their monthly bills on time, says one firm, while another says that 43% of them are building up "too much" credit card debt. (The "too much" threshold is not explained here. But those late fees can't help!) A Real Live Youth explains: "When you get a little bit of money, what do you do with it? Do you pay off your credit cards, put it toward student loans, make an extra payment on your house or car, or put it in your IRA? I don't have enough to really make a big dent in anything. If you get a bonus, why not just spend it?"

25 Comments / Post A Comment

brianvan (#149)

I won't read a USA Today article, but I do hope that they make the connection between "youth consumer debt" and "our economy has been out of jobs for 10 years now". Especially because they're a goddamn newspaper.

Crantastical (#4,127)

I made more per hour at my part time job during college (as a waitress) than I did at my first job after college (at a newspaper in DC). And this newspaper was rich, bitch! You think they're all broke but Roll Call made a lot of money at the time. Lobbying ads bring the $$$.

davidwatts (#72)

My girlfriend and I just had a big fight the other day about this whole lazy generation-categorizing thing. She was SURE we were not "gen Y" or "Millenials" – how could we be, when people 15 years younger than us also were? "Never underestimate the laziness of trend reporters," I told her. And I was right, but she wouldn't admit it, which is why our fight lasted so long.

The appropriate response would have been to bring more maniacal nuance to the distinctions. Here's Josh Glenn at hilobrow.

saythatscool (#101)

@KD: Wow, I just read that and wow. I am speechless.

That makes so much more sense now. I'm a cusper with the spending habits of the Ys and the slacker attitude of the Xs.

deepomega (#1,720)

I refuse to be categorized as generation Y.

Also, who the hell gets bonuses in this day and age? I thought they were a myth told by our ancestors to get us to keep working.

Art Yucko (#1,321)

My wife got a "bonus"… when they put her on furlough.

DainCurst (#3,377)

My boss got me a sandwich yesterday. I'm a temp so I think it counts as a bonus. Bonuswich!

I think that by "bonus," the young lady in the article probably meant "check in the mail from my Dad."

garge (#736)

I got a Wholefoods gift card when I was laid off two years ago. Bonus!!!!

NicFit (#616)

As a Gen-Xer in who in my twenties had the "why not just spend it?" attitude and is still paying off credit card debt *from twenty years ago*…I think I made my point.

I don't have any credit card debt, but then I've never been accepted for a credit card.

Art Yucko (#1,321)

consider yourself lucky.
@NicFit- also GenX, also had lots of fun racking up bills in my 20's that lasted for well over a decade. This is the first year since… I can't even remember, when I won't owe for anything other than a mortgage.
My shirts have holes and are missing buttons, but at least I'm not paying 29% interest.

brent_cox (#40)

@Art hey me too! But is there a single grown-up alive in the 90s that wasn't feasting on sweet free unsecured credit?

Art Yucko (#1,321)

Oh, I know for fact you can find some responsible individuals who didn't put every car-repair and dine-out on the plastic. But that's probably because a.-they didn't dine out, they ate rice and beans. b.-their desire for cheap credit was greatly tamed by a massive, crushing student-loan debt.

roboloki (#1,724)

back in the day my dealer didn't accept plastic

Bittersweet (#765)

Art and Brent, I'm one of 'em…mostly because in my 20s massive crushing b. made a. the only possibility.

Baboleen (#1,430)

As a parent of a "Gen Y" person, I am accountable for my son's lack of fiscal responsiblity. However, in the 2 years, during which the shit hit the financial fan, he has seen the light (if you want to call it "light".) He knows not to ask for ANY money from me. If I have it for an absolutely dire need, I will supply it. I have had to use the word "tough luck" several times. Can't always get what he wants, but he gets what he needs.

Matt (#26)

"This is the news."

Crantastical (#4,127)

I thought we were supposed to spend lots of money we don't have to get the economy back on track?

jfruh (#713)

Those Gen Y fuckers born in 1999 are huge spenders at strip clubs and hot boutiques, I've been told.

HiredGoons (#603)

Eat, drink and be m'eh.

keisertroll (#1,117)

As a Gen-Yer who's just got his first paycheck since Bush was in office, I know exactly how TLC felt when they hit number one.

synchronia (#3,755)

Well yeah, because we'll have Social Security to fall back on, right?

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