Spending, Saving and Inflation – Planning Your Finances in an Unsettled Economy
educating-myself | Read Time: 3 minutes
By Shari Kruzinski | Published: October 2022
As the economy continues to be volatile, rising prices for just about everything has remained consistent, if not constant. And when it comes to spending and saving in this inflationary environment, Greater Philadelphia and Delaware region residents certainly have their concerns.
A new WSFS Bank Money Trends study found that nine in 10 people in the region are at least slightly worried about the impact of rising prices in the next year, and more than half (54%) are very or extremely worried.
The good news? More than one-third (37%) of people in the region have increased their savings over the last year, for many reasons. No matter what motivates you to save, saving more now is a smart move for your financial future.
Here are steps you can take to stretch your spending power and build savings, whether you’re planning for a large purchase, setting a holiday budget amid rising prices, or laying a foundation for a stable financial future.
Review and Adjust Your Spending Habits
The Money Trends study found that more than four in 10 regional residents are actually spending more than they did last year, and 62% cited rising costs and inflation as the primary reason.
Knowing that finding deals on everyday items like groceries, gas and household needs is much more difficult, take a hard look at your non-essential spending and cut back where you can. Just under half (46%) of your regional neighbors who are saving more are doing so by cutting out non-essentials, so while it may seem difficult at first it is doable.
Making More Money? Bank It.
Nearly as many people (45%) reported that their income has increased, enabling them to save more this year. While everyone’s income situation is different, if your income does increase, try to keep your spending levels where they are now and save the extra money in your paycheck.
Reset Your Goals
Inflation does not make saving money easy, but with a solid plan in place, attaining your savings goals can be easier than you think. It’s always a good idea to check in with your banker or financial planner to make sure you are on track to achieve your next financial goal, whether it’s to buy a car or house, start a family, be prepared for a money emergency, or even retire.
In this current economic environment, it’s even more important to stay on top of your finances, so leverage the experts that are available to you.
Re-Think Your Holiday Spending
While the Money Trends study found that four in 10 regional shoppers plan to spend less on gifts than they did last year, there may be an opportunity to stretch those budgets for the benefit of your own wallet and those of small businesses in the region.
Forty-four percent of respondents also said they were going spend less money on travel this holiday season, so if you’re planning to stay home this holiday season spending your gift budget locally can help spread holiday cheer while supporting your neighbors’ small businesses.
About the Author – Shari Kruzinski
Shari Kruzinski is Executive Vice President and Chief Customer Officer at WSFS Bank. Her career spans more than 30 years in the banking industry, including 31 years with WSFS. In her current position, Shari leads the Bank’s Customer division including Customer Experience and enterprise-wide Customer initiatives. She also oversees the Bank’s retail offices, contact center, and retail operations.
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