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Nearly three-quarters U.S. millennials live paycheck to paycheck, survey shows

About 7 in 10 millennials in the U.S. are living paycheck to paycheck, with many struggling to pay off their bills every month, a new survey shows.

The main reasons for millennials' financial distress is heavy debt and the financial pressure of having to look after dependent family members, according to the survey from personal finance site Pymnts and LendingClub, an online lender. 

By comparison, about half of baby boomers live paycheck to paycheck, compared to 64% of Gen Xers and 66% of Gen Z. Across all age groups, 60% of U.S. adults live paycheck to paycheck, down from 64% during this same period last year, Pymnts said. 

The U.S. has more than 92 million millennials, meaning the age groups accounts for more than a quarter of the American population. History has not been kind to this generation: They have lived through three recessions — the sharp downturns that followed the 2001 dotcom crash, 2008 housing bust and 2020 coronavirus pandemic. As a result, millennials have faced the worst economic conditions of any generation in U.S. history, the Washington Post reported

Older millennials are racking up debt faster than any other generation, accounting for $4 trillion owed as of February, according to New York Federal Reserve data. A Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis study found that Black millennials in particular are less wealthy than their baby boomer parents at that comparable age and are also falling well behind their White and Hispanic millennial peers in building net worth. 

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Millennials are also putting off major financial milestones like buying a home or saving for retirement because of crippling student loan debt. 

Despite those woes, millennials say they're saving more money these days, according to Pymnts. Millennial respondents to the survey reported $11,000 socked away on average last month compared to $7,300 a year ago. 

"This suggests that, like other paycheck-to-paycheck consumers, they have learned to manage their finances through multiple recessions and financial crises," the survey stated.

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