The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

A new report says 1 in 6 millennials has $100,000 in savings. This is how some found a way to stockpile cash.

(Washington Post illustration)
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Turns out many millennials aren’t as broke as we think.

A Bank of America report found that nearly half of millennials in their poll — Americans 23 and 37 — have $15,000 or more saved, and one in six has more than $100,000 in savings.

In reporting on Bank of America’s “Better Money Habits,” USA Today spoke to millennials who discovered they could save a lot of money by moving back home with their parents. Watch the video.

Meagan Walsh said moving back home and not paying rent allowed her to save 75 to 80 percent of her salary. She was then able to put down 20 percent on a 4-bedroom Cape Cod, with a little more than 1,100 square feet.

“It turns out that millennials are actually just as good, or better, than other generations when it comes to managing money, and they are getting their financial houses in order,” said Bank of America’s Andrew Plepler, global head of environmental, social and governance.

Here are some key findings from the report:

— 47 percent have $15,000 or more in savings

— 16 percent have $100,000 or more in savings

— 73 percent of millennials who have a budget stick to it every month or most months

— 67 percent of millennials who have a savings goal stick to it every month or most months

Read more: One millennial’s advice to peers on saving for retirement: Don’t live by FOMO

Despite displaying some good habits, young adults are still stressing out about money.

— 35 percent don’t think they are saving enough

— 21 percent aren’t planning and saving for retirement

— 20 percent are concerned they won’t be able to afford a home

— 17 percent said they are spending more than they should

Even the young adults don’t give themselves enough credit for good money habits, with 64 percent of millennials saying they think their generation is not good at managing money and 73 percent reporting their generation overspends on unnecessary indulgences.

“Let’s not forget, many millennials entered the workforce during the most severe economic downturn since the Great Depression,” Plepler says. “However, they seem to have weathered the storm quite admirably.”

Read more: Here’s What You Should Know About That Survey Saying 1 in 6 Millennials Has $100K in Savings

Color of Money question of the week
What do you think of young adults returning home to save money? Send your comments to Please include your name, city and state. All opinions are welcome, but please keep your comments civil.

Live chat today
Let’s talk. It’s just you and me today. So, what’s on your mind moneywise? Join the discussion live from noon to 1 p.m. Here’s the link.

A year of Trump
Last week I asked: Do you feel you are worse or better off financially since Trump was elected?

Linda Anderson wrote, “I am financially much better off than I was a year ago or expected to be two to three years ago. I recently retired a year early to become a full-time RVer with my partner. I will have a year and a half with no income before I can collect my teacher retirement. I will only have a small amount of Social Security. My mutual fund portfolio grew at about 12 percent this past year, when I expected 6 percent to 8 percent. Whether or not one likes President Trump’s manner, he has been good for the markets and business and industry.”

Robert Hall of Nutley, N.J. said, “because my wife and I have a relatively large stock portfolio, we are enormously better off . . . in Trump Year One. We feel chagrined that on some days our net worth goes up more than many hardworking families make in a year. We know that much of the stock market rise is fueled by a tax law and deregulation that will harm the nation in the long run. Given the choice between more modest wealth increases and an administration that is poisoning the nation but making us richer, we wish we had the former option.”

“I’m part of the almost 50 percent of American’s who have benefitted from a rising stock market in the last year,” wrote James Ferguson of San Diego. “Many people attribute that to Trump, not least among them is Trump. However, I think mainly this was a trend in progress, and the world economy has help a good deal, but there has also been an exuberance bump due to businesses looking forward to tax relief. Trump has little to do with that, except as a signature to long-standing aspirations of Republicans. So, am I better off in the last year? Sure, but I also know it’s transient, and the long-term trends, if the inequities in society persist, are leaning toward a decline in American influence, leadership, and participation in the world.”

Read: Investors Fool Themselves Into Seeing a Trump Rally: The markets are reaching records for reasons that have little or nothing to do with the president.

Color of Money columns this week
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