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Inflation and recession concerns are directly impacting employees

Aug 4, 2022
Empower Institute

People nationwide say they are making lifestyle and financial changes to deal with skyrocketing costs

Empower’s Wealth and Wellness Index Mid-Year Survey reveals sobering details about how inflation is impacting Americans’ financial attitudes and behaviors: 85% say they are worried about inflation, 69% say their income is not keeping pace and 56% believe their standard of living is declining. The survey of 2,000 Americans helps identify ways employers can support employees during this period of workplace culture and economic change.

Inflation and recessionary fears are forcing Americans to make lifestyle adjustments

Due to skyrocketing food, gas, home and car prices, 86% of Americans have taken some type of action to try and tame inflation’s impact on their wallets. And although the United States was not in a recession when the study was conducted, 73% reported feeling anxious about how they would cope financially should one occur.

Top actions taken to prepare for a potential recession

Top actions taken to prepare for a potential recession

Note: Due to rounding, some categories may not add up to 100%.

Many Americans say they feel financially unhealthy

Not only has inflation pummeled Americans’ pocketbooks, but it has them feeling financially unfit. A whopping 66% say they are worried about their financial health. Only 36% said they feel very financially healthy, while 21% feel very unhealthy. And more than half (56%) said their standard of living is declining. They also say the resulting anxiety has impacted many aspects of their daily lives.

Americans say their worry has impacted…
(Includes respondents reporting some impact and a lot of impact)

Americans say their worry has impacted…

Americans are looking for new ways to make ends meet

Americans are getting creative when it comes to the financial ramifications of inflation and recessionary fears. They are also taking action to upgrade their quality of life and their satisfaction with work situations. For example:

  • More than 40% of Americans have asked or plan to ask for a raise at work.
  • Many workers (39%) have or plan to change jobs or seek a new career.
  • Overall, 30% of Americans say they have concerns about the financial impact of returning to the office.
  • Many younger employees are picking up stakes, with 31% having or planning to relocate to a new city, state or country.

To learn more about the research findings and the impact the current environment is having on Americans’ financial health, download the research brief.

Navigating Change research brief - download



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