One Crisis Away From Disaster: 62 Percent Of Americans Live Paycheck To Paycheck

News Image By Michael Snyder/Economic Collapse Blog December 29, 2023
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Thanks to a soaring stock market, the wealthy are feeling very good about things right now, but the rest of the country is really hurting.  Homelessness is rising at the fastest pace ever recorded, the number of children that are suffering from hunger is rapidly growing, and more than 60 percent of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.  

The mainstream media continues to insist that the economy is in good shape, but how can that possibly be true if nearly two-thirds of the entire nation is just barely scraping by?  According to brand new numbers that were just released, the percentage of U.S. adults that live paycheck to paycheck has actually increased by 4 percent just since the month of March...

- Sixty-two percent of adults in December said they live paycheck to paycheck, up from 58 percent in March.

- Forty percent of consumers living paycheck to paycheck have super-prime credit scores.

- Fifty-seven percent of consumers who own credit cards are living paycheck to paycheck.


Even as credit card debt tops $1 trillion, almost all -- or 96% -- of shoppers said they overspend this season.

Half of consumers plan to take on more debt to cover those holiday expenses, according to another report by Ally Bank. Only 23% have a plan to pay it off within one to two months.

We just can't help ourselves.

No matter how much we already have, we always feel the need to have more.

But even though we continue to spend more money, we certainly aren't better off than in past years.  Just check out these new poll numbers...

Almost half of voters say the Biden administration's economic policies have hurt them and only 14 percent say they are better off, according to yet another poll that suggests President Joe Biden is struggling to get his message across ahead of next year's election.

Even he realizes it, quietly benching the term 'Bidenomics' in speeches during the past month.

Overall, his economic policies have a 32-point disapproval rating in a new survey for Fox News, with far more voters feeling they have been hurt than helped.

The people that are doing better off are those at the very top of the economic food chain.

The stock market has been doing really well in recent weeks, but some experts are warning that this is just a temporary phenomenon.

In fact, Harry Dent is warning that "2024 is going to be the biggest single crash year we'll see in our lifetimes"...

As the clock ticks closer to 2024, one outspoken economist is making a dire predication about the markets in the new year.

"Since 2009, this has been 100% artificial, unprecedented money printing and deficits; $27 trillion over 15 years, to be exact. This is off the charts, 100% artificial, which means we're in a dangerous state," Harry Dent told Fox News Digital. "I think 2024 is going to be the biggest single crash year we'll see in our lifetimes."

For some reason, he is pointing to the month of May as a time when things will get really bad...

"If I'm right, it is going to be the biggest crash of our lifetime, most of it happening in 2024. You're going to see it start and be more obvious by May," the analyst stressed. "So if you just get out for six to 12 months and stuff stays at the highest valuation history, maybe you miss a little more gains if I'm wrong. If I'm right, you're going to save massive losses and be able to reinvest a year or year-and-a-half from now at unbelievably low prices and magnify your gains beyond compare."

Of course predicting a stock market crash in 2024 isn't exactly going out on a limb.

It is kind of like predicting that the sky will be blue or the Jets will stink.

At this stage, everyone can see that the stock market bubble is on borrowed time.

The bankers already realize this and are trimming expenses everywhere for what is to come.

During the first 10 months of this year, banks in the United States closed a total of 2,118 branches...

U.S. banks closed 2,118 branch locations between January and the end of October, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Sadly, branches continue to get shut down at a staggering rate.

Another way that banks are cutting costs is by laying off workers.

According to Zero Hedge, twenty of the largest banks have combined to eliminate 61,905 jobs so far this year...

A new report from the Financial Times shows twenty of the world's largest banks slashed 61,905 jobs in 2023, a move to protect profit margins in a period of high interest rates amid a slump in dealmaking and equity and debt sales. This compared with the 140,000 lost during the GFC of 2007-08.

"There is no stability, no investment, no growth in most banks -- and there are likely to be more job cuts," said Lee Thacker, owner of financial services headhunting firm Silvermine Partners.

FT noted that corporate disclosure data and its independent reporting did not include smaller regional bank cuts, indicating total job loss could be much higher.

The banks are not okay.

In fact, I expect the big banks to make lots of headlines in 2024.

Meanwhile, problems continue to pile up for the retail industry.

CNN says that Nike is "a bellwether for the global economy", and so the fact that the company is planning to cut costs by about 2 billion dollars is not a good sign at all...

Nike, a bellwether for the global economy, sounded a warning sign Thursday as the sneaker giant sees consumers becoming more cautious.

Nike slashed its revenue outlook for the year and announced cost cuts amid growing concerns that consumers are slowing their spending around the world. The company said it's looking for as much as $2 billion in cost savings in the next three years, which includes laying off employees.

But at least Nike is still in business.

2023 was a year when U.S. retailers closed thousands of stores, and a number of well known chains actually had to file for bankruptcy...

Twenty major retailers axed 2,847 locations between them in 2023, according to Business Insider - as more and more shoppers buy their products online

The issue has been exacerbated by rampant spates of crime which have forced many companies to lock up their products. Earlier this year, Target alone said it was losing as much as $500 million a year to theft.

It is little wonder then that retailers are struggling to cope. Bed Bath & Beyond, Rite Aid and Party City are among the major chains to have filed for bankruptcy in the last 12 months.

Some of you may be thinking that those retailers are hurting because of the growth of the online retail industry.

But online retailers are going belly up too.  For example, Zulily just announced that it will be permanently going out of business...

Online retailer Zulily is shutting down.

The company announced on its website it has made the "difficult but necessary decision to conduct an orderly wind-down of the business."

Zulily said it will "strive to continue to provide everyone with the best service possible during the holiday season" and it will try to fulfill all pending orders and ensure that orders that could not be filled are canceled and refunded.

Of course the mainstream media will continue to insist that these are just isolated incidents and that the overall economy is doing just fine.

One of the primary reasons why they try to slant economic news in such a positive direction is because most of them are Democrats...

A new study from Syracuse University's Newhouse School of Public Communications found that just 3.4% of American journalists are Republicans.

The study is based "on an online survey with 1,600 U.S. journalists conducted in early 2022" and is the latest in a series of studies stretching back to 1971 that take the temperature of the fourth estate's partisan lean, job satisfaction, and professional attitudes.

When the first iteration of the study came out over 50 years ago, 35.5% of respondents said they were Democrats, 25.7% said they were Republicans, and 32.5% said they were Independents.

Since a Democrat is currently in the White House, they want you to feel good about the economy so that you will vote for Democrats in 2024.

But everyone can see that the economy is coming apart at the seams all around us, and most Americans do not have a good feeling about what is coming during the year ahead.

Meanwhile, the bottom of the economic food chain is already collapsing...

-1 out of 5 U.S. children already do not have enough food to eat.

-U.S. food banks are dealing with unprecedented demand.

-Homelessness in the United States is growing at the fastest pace ever recorded.

The homelessness crisis is particularly dire in the state of California.

If you can believe it, California accounts for almost half of all people living in the streets in the entire country...

California counted 181,399 people experiencing homelessness in January. Of those, 123,423 people (68%) were "unsheltered", meaning living outside in tents, cars or other makeshift shelters, as opposed to indoor shelters or temporary setups. At 68%, the state has a greater share of its homeless population living outdoors than any other state and accounts for 49% of all people living on the streets in the US.

When an economic crisis arrives, it is those that are at the bottom of the food chain that often feel it first.

The bottom of the economic food chain in the United States is already collapsing, and it won't be too long before those at the very top feel a tremendous amount of pain as well.

Originally published at The Economic Collapse Blog - reposted with permission.

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