CHICAGO (9/15/08)--Many employees are one paycheck away from financial trouble, according to a study by a Chicago-based credit union and employee benefits specialists group. Alliant CU, a $5.693 billion asset credit union, and the International Society of Certified Employee Benefits Specialists (ISCEBS) announced the results of their study on U.S. workers' personal financial situations and employers' viewpoints and involvement regarding their employees' financial lives. A white paper, "American Workers: Getting Ahead or Just Getting By," is based on two surveys conducted in March. One polled ISCEBS member benefits specialists about their employee benefits and ability to help in their employees' financial lives. The other surveyed U.S. workers about their opinions and attitudes regarding their employers as financial partners and the extent to which their employers help out. Key findings include:
* Employer benefits such as health and retirement plans are seen as important but primarily for future rather than present needs. Many employees have financial needs that require assistance "here and now." * Employees with financial concerns spend significant work time dealing with personal financial matters. * Although employees are generally pleased with their income levels, they can't seem to save enough or get ahead financially. Half describe themselves as living from paycheck to paycheck. Less than 20% considered themselves to be financially secure. * More and more workers are financially strained by increasing financial debt. * Employees generally feel they lack knowledge about handling money.
"Financial literacy and low cost, high value financial services are keys to economic health for individuals and our economy as a whole," said Alliant CU President/CEO David W. Mooney. He applauded benefits specialists' efforts to provide financial literacy and services that deliver daily, not deferred, value. Alliant is a financial benefit solutions provider to more than 140 employer groups and networks, and a national partner of Operation HOPE, a national foundation that provides financial education classes in public schools around the U.S. A full copy of the white paper is available at the credit union's website. Use the resource link.