Many Americans are saving more and spending less during the pandemic. Forty-six percent of more than 5,000 U.S. adults said they are “more of a saver now” than before the pandemic, according to a recent survey conducted by CNBC + Acorns Invest in You.
Certainly, millions of Americans are still unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have seen their finances take a major hit. For those still employed, however, they may be feel able to build their nest eggs.
About half—or 49%--surveyed in the CNBC poll said their monthly spending has decreased. As more people stay home in the pandemic and work from home, they may be saving from going out and commuting costs.
With all that saving, more Americans may be apt to invest. Indeed, “we have seen an uptick in an interest in investing,” Winnie Sun, managing director of Sun Group Wealth Partners in Irvine, Calif., told CNBC. “They are seeing their checking accounts getting larger and they think that money is not earning enough for them.”
Stacey Kelly, a Los Angeles–based content producer, told CNBC she is saving about $800 to $1,000 every month since the coronavirus outbreak began. She’s now able to contribute to an online savings account and a Roth individual retirement account. Among her savings goals now: saving to buy a condo. “I have all these buckets for savings,” Kelly told CNBC. “It just feels good because I can actually put money in it now.”
Many Americans have been able to save more money as they work from home and save on their commute. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans have saved $90 billion in commuting costs, according to a new study from UpWork, a freelancing platform for businesses and individuals.
Before the pandemic, Americans spent about 4.6 hours a week commuting. Americans have saved an average of 49.6 minutes in their day from working from home.
Workers living in some of the biggest cities are reaping the biggest benefits of reclaiming time in their day from commuting. The UpWork study found that residents in the following cities were benefiting the most by going remote: East Stroudsburg, Pa. (83.6 minutes, average savings time on commutes per day); New York-Newark-Jersey City, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa. (76.2 minutes); Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.Va. (71.9 minutes); Vallejo-Fairfield, Calif. (70.4 minutes); and San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, Calif. (70.2 minutes).
Source: “Here’s How the Pandemic Has Upended the Financial Lives of Average Americans: CNBC + Acorns Survey,” CNBC (Sept. 1, 2020) and “Where Remote Work Saves Commuters Most,” UpWork (Aug. 25, 2020)