Two out of every three Americans don’t have the cash available right away to pay for a $1,000 emergency, according to a new poll released this month from the Associated Press and NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
It’s not terribly surprising that households making less than $50,000 a year would struggle for that much quick cash — 75% say they would. But even for those with incomes between $50,000 and $100,000, a whopping 67% still say they’d have difficulty.
What’s even more startling is that one-third of the wealthiest 20 percent of American households — those earning more than $100,000 a year — still say they’d struggle a little to find $1,000 fast.
Trevor Tompson, director of the AP-NORC Center, said there’s evidence of growing optimism among the nation’s most affluent. But it’s not all good news.
“Even though there are signs the economy has improved in recent years, a lot of people aren’t feeling the recovery has reached them,” he said in a press release.
Overall, just 36% of Americans say they’d be very likely to pay the $1,000 bill right away with cash or check. The other respondents said they’d consider:
- Using a credit card — 41%
- Arranging a payment plan — 37%
- Borrowing from family or friends — 14%
- Skipping other bills — 13 percent%.
And 11% said it was very likely they wouldn’t be able to pay the bill at all.