NEW YORK — Millennials struggle a bit more than previous generations with financial vices, especially when it comes to eating out or Starbucks runs, a new study finds.
Researchers at Bankrate.com, a personal finance site, interviewed 1,003 American young adults over the phone in early June, hoping to learn more about their financial habits, both good and bad.
According to the survey’s results, 29 percent of millennials buy coffee at least three times a week, while the average millennial either eats out or orders take-out five times per week.
“Often, it’s the minor, habitual expenses, such as take-out and alcohol, that wreak havoc on your budget,” says Sarah Berger, who authors a section called “The Cashlorette” for Bankrate, in a press release. “Small steps, such as preparing meals at home and brewing your own coffee, can add up to big savings over the course of a year.”
While 59 percent of all Americans don’t purchase freshly-brewed drinks— such as coffee or tea— in a typical week, 73 percent don’t purchase alcohol at a bar or similar establishment, and 40 percent don’t dine out more than once a week, these and similar figures become a bit distorted for millennials.
More than half of millennials, for example, eat out at least three times a week, while close to half visit a bar at least once a week.
Considering the results of a previous study conducted by Bankrate, which found that only 16 percent of millennials have a rainy day fund that covers six months of expenses, perhaps a change in spending behavior would be warranted for the new generation.
“Money saved from packing lunch and passing on lattes would be a smart investment in building that emergency fund,” suggests Berger.
The poll’s respondents consisted of a nationally representative sample of young adults across the continental United States. Its margin of error was plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.