While you might think that saving for college, retirement, or buying home are the reasons Americans save, according to a recent survey, travel was reported as the top priority. In a study of 2,500 adult Americans representing varied demographic, geographic, economic, and social groups, 45 percent of respondents set aside money for traveling. This was especially true among younger respondents, who prefer travel experiences over savings to buy a home.
After travel, the main priorities for saving by Americans are:
- for an emergency fund (37 percent)
- for retirement (30 percent)
- to buy a house (21 percent)
- to buy a car, truck or motorcycle (20 percent)
For additional information on saving priorities, check out these two resources:
- Have students conduct a survey among people they know to determine the main reasons for saving.
- Have students talk to others to obtain ideas for building a person’s savings account.
- What do you believe are reasons people prefer saving for travel over other financial goals?
- Describe other actions that might be taken to motivate people to build their savings?
Pokémon Go has resulted in a loss of money and other concerns. In this popular game, users interact virtually with Pokémon characters placed in real world settings. The app is free to download, however there are in-app purchasing opportunities. Players are encouraged to pay for hints and tips for a competitive advantage.
In addition to financial losses, the Pokémon Go app has been used to lure robbery victims. Other players have been robbed of their phones. Police departments caution players to be aware of their surroundings.
Be warned that “free isn’t the same as no cost.” Users may pay in the form of data use, legal confrontations, injuries, and reduced work productivity. Higher insurance costs can also occur when playing the game while driving, which might result in an auto accident. Social concerns include disturbing church services and other occasions with players capturing creatures during the events.
For additional information on the cost of Pokémon Go, click here.
- Have students suggest ways that an app game might be used for improved learning or assisting others in need.
- Have students describe safety precautions when playing Pokémon Go.
- Why are people attracted to the game, often with a personal or financial cost?
- What actions might be taken to avoid the financial and personal dangers of the game?
“A decision by OPEC this week to maintain current levels of oil production is hammering major energy companies in the U.S. and abroad.”
This article explores the winners and losers of lower energy prices. For consumers, lower energy and gas prices means increased discretionary funds for purchasing consumer goods including food, clothes, electronics, and presents for friends and relatives during the holiday season. Also, both large and small retailers benefit because consumers have more money to spend. And airlines, package delivery services, cruise lines, and other companies are spending less on fuel.
The disadvantages of lower energy and gasoline prices are already causing the stock prices of big oil companies including Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Exxon Mobil, Marathon Oil, and British Petroleum to decline.
For more information go to http://finance.yahoo.com/news/plunging-crude-prices-hammer-energy-companies-123639239–finance.html
You may want to use the information in this blog post and the original article to
- Discuss the impact of the cost of energy and gasoline on a consumer’s budget.
- Describe alternatives uses for the savings that result from lower energy and gasoline prices.
- What is the current price for a gallon of gasoline? How does this compare with the cost 6 months ago? What impact does this have on your spending patterns and your personal budget?
- While you are saving money at the pump, the big question may be how you plan to use the savings. Are there alternatives to spending the money on clothes, entertainment, or holiday gifts?
- Now that the value of energy company stocks has declined, would you invest in a company like Exxon Mobil or Chevron? Explain your answer.