Study: Sixty-Three Percent of Americans Cannot Cover An Added $500 Cost To Their Monthly Expenses

200px-US10dollarbill-Series_2004AWe have previously followed the alarming marginal economic condition of most Americans. Another study offers another glimpse into the reality of the lives for most people struggling in this country. The study by Bankrate suggests that 63 percent of Americans say that they do not have enough money to cover a $500 car repair or $1000 hospital bill.

Real median household income has fallen to $54,000 a year. Higher health care costs, food, and other expenses have taken their toll on the middle class. The study showed that only one out of five consumers making less than $30,000 said they had enough emergency savings set aside to handle an unexpected bill.

These studies further illustrate how issues like private planes for ministers or claims of presidential candidates that they were “dead broke” can create such a backlash.

Source: CBS

38 thoughts on “Study: Sixty-Three Percent of Americans Cannot Cover An Added $500 Cost To Their Monthly Expenses”

  1. The only bright spot I have seen is the movement towards redistricting by citizen committees. I don’t hold out much hope for it, but even in Ohio where they just voted in redistricting for state offices by a citizen committee, the republican governor says he favors the same process for nation office. If they and other states can pull it off, there is a slight chance for government of, by, and for…

  2. stevegroen
    We have given over our nation to the war machine, the military industrial complex that Eisenhower warned about, I read recently that the US has been at war, one way or another, for all but about 25 years of our existence. The only other business we really have is money, making money from money and betting on money–nothing of value or real worth created, just more money. And a handful of people now own as much as fully 50% of our citizens and people think that’s OK.

    For all of our incredible accomplishments since the founding of this republic, we are somehow some of the angriest, most hostile and violent, drug-addicted, miserable people on planet Earth. What might we accomplish if we stopped feeding the banks and the military industrial complex? Corporations have bought and sold the Congress, the Supreme Court and the Presidency. And so many people are just fine with that. How sad.

    1. PhillyT: I agree.

      Even government intervention on behalf of that 50% has succumbed to the war economy. There has to be a change in economic theory to turn around this derelict barge.

      I’m not optimistic without laws providing third-party voice in the political process and ridding ourselves of the investment class.

      Best regards.

  3. John-> It’s not “Freedom and Self-Reliance” anymore, it’s Freedom FROM Self-Reliance now days.

  4. Tin -> Our governor just enacted a law this year that stops county’s from raising property taxes to pay for their agenda’s.

    But I now live in a farm house with acreage and have an agricultural classification on my property.

    But that’s what happened, both houses taxes and homeowners insurance went up every year while my property value went down. I bought a fixer upper, cheapest house in the neighborhood and fixed it up. When I sold it, I more than doubled my initial investment but the county got word that I was making improvements and raised my taxes by $5,000 and property value only a little for 2016.

    There was no structural changes. But I sold it before 2016. It just seems they’ll get you every way possible.

  5. All the political blaming- Clinton, Bush, Obama, add Reagon, Bush – is on target. The two parties are taking turns doing favors for banks, financial institutions, corporations. What one party can’t manage and still get re-elected, the other manages. It’s game to them. It keeps the riff-raff, i.e. those they are fleecing, divided and pointing their fingers at each other, rather than those doing the scam. In addition to re-election, they are looking to get their next job with one of those firms. For those in the various executive departments, they are just looking to return to the corporation from which they came and continued to serve while working for the government.

    How to fix it? Stop pointing fingers that divide us. Start working together to get rid of the corruption that is endemic to both parties.

  6. As others have pointed out, not having the ability or cushion to handle a sudden expense is at least as much a spending issue as it is an income issue for many, many people. As a population, we’ve been steadily ratcheting up our ability to rationalize and transform “wants” into “needs,” and “indulgence” into “deserve.”

    It’s not going to end well.

  7. The Constitution is not the bible. The only similarity is that they were both written by fallible men who were trying the best they could to be wise with what they knew at the time. When the Constitution was written, slaves were considered to be 3/5 of a human being…that all men are created equal. And women would not be allowed to vote for another hundred thirty years. The Consitution and the laws favored white, male property owners, much as they still do. I see that radical right wing TX governor has called for a constitutional convention. Be careful what you wish for.

    As for BDS, it’s just another straw man juvenile representation, that is in no way an actual argument or defense of anything. That’s why the Stooge who keeps referring to it usually adds an “LOL”, because it’s a joke. You should lay off the weed, dude.

    Finally, the President does not control the Fed. Not does he control the Chinese economy. Or the stock market. But I’m pretty sure he is responsible for my gas being $1.79 a gallon. Thanks Obama.

    1. PhillyT writes, “the President does not control the Fed . . .” It may very well be that it’s the other way around.

      The Federal Reserve’s mandate is to “keep our money valuable and our financial system healthy.”

      http://www.investopedia.com/articles/economics/08/treasury-fed-reserve.asp

      Our money is backed now only by our military’s ability to wage war and force the dollar on other sovereigns. Otherwise, our money has no value. Hence, the Fed may have the bridle and bit on the President.

  8. P.S.

    BTW, corporate taxes are paid by the customers not the corporation.

    Raises in the minimum wage cause layoffs and are soon wiped out by inflation.

    Corporate tax and minimum wages don’t exist in any reality and are great big jokes played on fools.

  9. Please direct me to the Article or Section in the Constitution that mandates that the government take care of individuals.

    The American thesis is freedom and self-reliance – freedom and free enterprise without interference by government.

    Every individual has the right to open a charity in the free and open markets of the private sector.

    Was there welfare, affirmative action, social services, quotas, forced busing, Medicare, Social Security, Obamacare, HAMP, HARP, Corporate welfare, financial “stimulus,” “Fair Housing,” “Non-Discrimination Law” etc.implemented by the Founders in 1789.

    Ask yourselves why not?

    Because Karl Marx and the Communist Manifesto didn’t come along for another 59 years.

    Freedom and Self-Reliance. That’s the best one can ask for; to be rid of the King and dictator.

    Whatever you have is enough. Ask them in Bangladesh and East Timor.

  10. Yeah, well, the federal government is supposed to be on a bare bones operational budget, but Obama just magically came up with funding for 500 more ATF and FBI agents to go after gun owners.

  11. This thread (arguments or discussions) is like watching a gunnery battle at sea. The target gets bracketed…shots hit long or short of the target. But never hit the target as others maneuver it.

    The Bush/Reagan vs Obama shell splashes miss the primary cause of what’s gone on. Bill Clinton.

    Under him Fannie Mae and Freddie started loosened requirements. (Geitner) Banks allowed to expand services and grab for even more financial control. Dot com took off. Remember the stocks that soared to $2,000/share but had absolutely no physical assets..none? Everything was leased. Bill Clinton and the move toward stock valuation as means to compensate corporate officers. Income disparity started logarithmic growth…compensation moved to stock options etc.

    Bush II comes in and 6 months later the floor disappeared from under dot coms taking a number of other sectors with it including investment/retirement accounts. Then 9/11 and the aircraft industry very nearly tanks, along with the suppliers and middle income real estate to name a few.

    Clinton had a surplus founded on the taxes from the vacuous dot com financials (individual and corporate) …the 1%. Stocks tanked, worse than tanked, just as we go to war with 9/11 and Bush II is holding Clinton’s bag. But George II never blamed his predecessor as Obama has been doing for 6 yrs.

    Oh yes, remember Desert Storm? Congress had drastically cut our armed forces to coincidently take effect the year following DS. George I couldn’t wait another year. So Bill came in with a much smaller growth of the defense budget as the income from dot com takes off. Do you remember that Bill quit going after Bin Laden? But changed the Somalia op without sufficient forces …Black Hawk down. So how’s that working for us?

    The Armed Forces are living with Clinton cut in warship funding. Yes it takes that long to design and build new warships. Cut in personnel meant that the leadership isn’t prepared to ramp up when needed. Takes about the same time to grow good middle management enlisted (chiefs and master sergeants). Just try living the life of today’s sailors on operational ships. They keep deploying as though still on a wartime footing but without the people, which brings up Carter…but not tonight.

    Time to stop…maybe should have earlier.

  12. Lisa N, You can challenge your property tax assessment; I did, and was successful. When property values tanked in our area, the county did not lower home values by a corresponding amount. Houses dropped 30% in value, and the county reduced home values for property tax assessment purposes by only 10%. Of course it’s in their interest to have higher assessments to generate higher tax revenues. But I checked Zillow and realtor.com for recent sales of similar houses in my neighborhood. I found three sales, printed them out, and used them to challenge the county’s assessment. Your county should provide instructions on how to challenge the assessment on your tax bill or on their website. I did mine through the mail; a few hours of work resulted in some decent savings. Plus I don’t want to give my county a penny more than I have to; I would give it to charity before the government, any day.

  13. “I mean, nice try on blaming Obama but the FACT is that the stock market is more than fully recovered and unemployment is the lowest it’s been since, well, since Clinton was in office.

    But, really, B+ for effort. D- on your facts.”

    And who was watching the bank in 2011 and 2014?

    Bush! Yeah right lol! Blame Bush. Hahahahaha thanks for the laugh.

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