Experts analyze millennials and their financial habits. These experts, according to the Business Insider, state that the Great Recession split the millennial generations into two distinct groups. As older millennials age, those who bore the brunt of the financial crisis and dealt with a tough job market, ultimately makes it harder for them to save. Younger millennials, who are experiencing the recovery period and entered a more positive job market, became risk-aware. Though these millennials are entering a better job market, they have to endure the weight of student loan debt in addition.
Forget intergenerational differences with baby boomers and Gen X— millennials have their own generation gap, and it’s all thanks to the financial crisis.
Jason Dorsey, a consultant, researcher of millennials, and president of the Center for Generational Kinetics, told Business Insider that the best way to look at millennials is by life stage and the events that shaped them, particularly the Great Recession.
Older millennials, defined by CGK as those over 30, took the greatest hit from the recession, making it harder for them to accumulate wealth. Younger millennials, defined by CGK as those under 30, entered the job market during the recovery period — and by watching the financial crisis unfold and not experiencing it directly, they learned what to do and what not to do, financially speaking.
The Great Recession left older millennials playing catch-up to the point where they may not retire
Dorsey called the Great Recession an “extremely formidable and difficult event” for the oldest millennials.
“This led to a very tough job market, wage stagnation for those that had jobs, student-loan debt that was increasingly hard to pay, and rising costs of living around the country,” Dorsey said. “The oldest millennials delayed many of the traditional markers of adulthood, such as marriage, kids, and buying homes, as they went through the eye of the Great Recession and the long and uneven recovery afterward.”
Millennial homeownership was at a record low in 2017, partly because of lifestyle changes like a delay in marriage and having children, Business Insider’s Akin Oyedele reported. Lack of financial security is one of the main reasons many millennials never tied the knot, Pew found.
Because of the economic environment created by the Great Recession and its aftermath, they often weren’t able to save or accumulate the amount of wealth they hoped or expected to — especially if they didn’t move to markets where job prospects were better or wages were enough to allow for savings, Dorsey said.
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