Millennials and Finance - US - April 2015
“Millennials are young and in the beginning stages of establishing themselves, their households, and their families. Their needs at this time are quite specific and revolve largely on learning how to manage their day-to-day finances. Institutions that can best help them with these most fundamental are likely to be those Millennials will look to stay with as time goes on.”
– Robyn Kaiserman, Financial Services Analyst
This report discusses the following key topics:
- Financial literacy: A huge problem
- So how do they really feel about money?
- Are advisory services for Millennials an opportunity for banks?
Millennials represent one quarter of the population in the US, even more than Baby Boomers. Consisting of “older Millennials” and “younger Millennials,” they are two groups with very different sets of financial needs. Younger Millennials are just starting out and have very little money or knowledge of how to manage what they have. Older Millennials are likely to be more established, perhaps married with children and with either a newly-purchased home or the desire to purchase one. The challenge for financial institutions is to find a way to reach all of them with messages that resonate with each group. This report examines the types of financial accounts Millennials have, as well as the types of institutions in which they have them. It also looks at the how Millennials view money and finances, as well as how they feel about financial advice and advisers.
Millennials are a diverse group that spans several life stages, each with its own unique set of financial needs. Therefore, financial institutions need to segment this generation into smaller sub-groups and recognize that the needs of one are not necessarily the needs of another. However, regardless of the slant of the marketing message, financial institutions need to be cognizant of the fact that Millennials don’t trust them fully; they lived through the recession, saw how it affected their families, and are committed to dealing only with businesses they believe have their best interests at heart. Building that trust requires institutions to position themselves as partners rather than “parents;” only then will Millennials be open to discussing the ways in which an institution can help them achieve their financial goals.
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