News Column

First Command Reports Shift in Financial Attitudes between America’s Career Military and Civilians

June 3, 2014

FORT WORTH, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- A shift in financial attitudes is taking place between middle-class military families and their civilian counterparts, with growing concerns over sequestration motivating servicemembers to stick to their frugal ways even as the improving economy is inspiring some members of the general population to warm up to spending. First Command Financial Services, Inc. is offering an in-depth look at these changing attitudes in the Summer 2014 issue of Journey, the online magazine for First Command clients.

Titled “Servicemembers Stick With Frugal Ways As Other Americans Warm Up To Spending,” the story explores changing consumer views on spending and saving through four distinct consumer segments first identified in 2009 as part of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®. The four segments are:

  • Free Spirits. These consumers may save money, but they believe in spending that money too – on vacations, consumer purchases and activities that add value to their life and help them enjoy the present. Free Spirits are becoming less common in the military and slightly more common in the general population. The annual results for 2013 show that Free Spirits made up 26 percent of military households and 30 percent of the general population. In 2011 and 2012, the two populations were holding at just under 30 percent.
  • Foul Weather Frugals. Members of this segment have embraced cutbacks and frugality for now, but may revert back to old, spendthrift behaviors once the economy is back on its feet. For 2013, military families made up 22 percent and the general population was 23 percent.
  • Scared Straight. These Americans have been “scared straight” after seeing the effects of the recession on their finances. Their main concern is paying off debts and managing their monthly bills. Scared Straights are becoming more common in the military and less common in the general population. For 2013, military families made up 33 percent and the general population was 29 percent. The two populations were both 31 percent the previous year.
  • True Frugals. They have embraced frugality as a lifestyle. They have always made prudent financial choices, and would do so whether or not the country is in a recession. For 2013, military families made up 19 percent and the general population was 18 percent.

    Be sure to check out this story and the entire Summer issue at http://fcjourney.com/.

    About the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®

    Compiled by Sentient Decision Science, Inc., the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® assesses trends among the American public’s financial behaviors, attitudes and intentions through a monthly survey of approximately 530 U.S. consumers aged 25 to 70 with annual household incomes of at least $50,000. Results are reported quarterly. The margin of error is +/- 4.3 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. www.firstcommand.com/research

    About Sentient Decision Science, Inc.

    Sentient Decision Science was commissioned by First Command to compile the Financial Behaviors Index®. SDS is a behavioral science and consumer psychology consulting firm with special vertical expertise within the financial services industry. SDS specializes in advanced research methods and statistical analysis of behavioral and attitudinal data.

    About First Command

    First Command Financial Services and its subsidiaries, including First Command Bank and First Command Financial Planning, assist American families in their efforts to build wealth, reduce debt and pursue their lifetime financial goals and dreams—focusing on consumer behavior as the first and most powerful determinant of results. Through knowledgeable advice and coaching of the financial behaviors conducive to success, First Command Financial Advisors have built trustworthy, lasting relationships with hundreds of thousands of client families since 1958.

    First Command Financial Services, Inc., is the parent of First Command Financial Planning, Inc. (Member SIPC, FINRA), First Command Insurance Services, Inc. and First Command Bank. Financial planning services and investment products, including securities, are offered by First Command Financial Planning, Inc.Insurance products and services are offered by First Command Insurance Services, Inc., in all states except Montana, where as required by law, insurance products and services are offered by First Command Financial Services, Inc. (a separate Montana domestic corporation). Banking products and services are offered by First Command Bank. In certain states, as required by law, First Command Insurance Services, Inc. does business as a separate domestic corporation. Securities products are not FDIC insured, have no bank guarantee and may lose value. A financial plan, by itself, cannot assure that retirement or other financial goals will be met. First Command Educational Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity. It is not affiliated with First Command Financial Services, Inc., or any of its affiliated entities.




    First Command Financial Services, Inc.

    Mark Leach, 817-569-2419

    Media Relations

    msleach@firstcommand.com

    www.firstcommand.com


    Source: First Command Financial Services, Inc.


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