The Truth About NonPrime Boomers

Baby Boomers

Nonprime borrowers sure have it tough. But which nonprime generation had it toughest?

Elevate’s Center for the New Middle Class might have a good idea. In fact, a surprising one.

Per the Center’s newest research, it was revealed that nonprime Boomers struggle less than any other nonprime generations.

Despite what many may believe about Baby Boomers having a hard time making ends meet, it was found that they have it easier than any other generations in the nonprime tier. They are also less likely to have more steady jobs and have better grip at their finances.

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Previous trends point to the opposite direction, perpetuating the long-held notions about nonprime Boomers. Case in point: a Fed study saying that a large chunk of the Boomer population is leaving the labor force, significantly affecting employment numbers.

But the Center debunked that conclusion after they found out that 60 percent of the nonprime Boomer population didn’t change employment in the last year. This percentage is higher than Millennials’ 43 percent or Gen Xer’s 59 percent.

Other findings

Contrasting nonprime Boomers’ financial profiles with those of their prime cohorts, the study was also able to reach the following conclusions:

  • Nonprime boomers are more than twice as likely to point at their finances as a significant source of stress;
  • Four times as likely to live paycheck to paycheck, with one in six using payday loans;
  • Fourteen times as likely to have difficulty predicting monthly income;
  • More than twice as likely to overdraft on their bank accounts;
  • More than thrice as likely to borrow against their retirement funds;
  • 46 percent less likely to go on a vacation; and are
  • More likely to be living in a household with three or more working adults

“The struggles that non-prime boomers continue to face, despite their relative stability when compared to other non-prime generations, illuminates just how tough things are for non-prime people of all ages,” executive director of the Elevate’s Center for the New Middle Class Jonathan Walker says.

“The struggles of other generations have a direct impact on the struggles of baby boomers. For example, with non-prime millennials unable to make financial progress despite their best efforts, fewer are buying homes, and more are living with their baby boomer parents for longer, putting additional strain on boomers’ finances,” he adds.

The study counters previously-held perceptions that nonPrime Boomers were the worst off financially among other nonprime generations and demonstrates why popular beliefs are insufficiently reliable in making conclusions about generational conditions.

About the Study

The study parsed data from a comparison of responses from 1,217 Americans with prime and nonprime credit scores. The interviews were conducted from the 6th to the 14th of December, 2016.

Elevate’s Profile

Elevate’s Center for the New Middle Class researches consumer behaviors and identifies the unique needs of nonprime Americans. Their goal is “is to provide research that encourages engagement, dialogue, sharing of information and cooperation between policymakers, consumer advocates, media, academics, and the general public to better serve the New Middle Class.”

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