It’s easy to look at a younger generation and point the finger at their smashed avocado.
But is millennial selfishness/lifestyle obsession really a thing? Are boomers really so much better with money?
These 6 findings show the issue is more complicated.
1. Boomers had it easy.
JP Morgan Asset Management research says that “Boomers benefited from a long period of economic growth and stability during the bulk of their peak earning years”, so much so that JP Morgan invented the phrase: “baby boomers’ financial exceptionalism”. What follows is that “the implied savings rate necessary for younger households to match the breadth of baby boomer balance sheets is incredibly large.”
2. Despite that, boomers still have debt problems like the rest of us.
43% of baby boomers expect to retire with debt, including credit cards, mortgages and unpaid bills. (To be fair, it’s partly because they’re still supporting their kids – the smashed avo eaters – and even possibly their parents; but couldn’t they have managed ‘exceptionally’ better?)
3. Gen Y does want to save and pay off debt.
When it comes to short-term goals, Australians of all generations say that saving money is their top priority – including millennials (Gen Ys). Paying off debt is the second priority for 32 percent of Gen Ys, with boomers only slightly more ambitious at 36 percent. Note: the Boomers were the only generation to prefer a holiday over paying off debt.
4. It’s the boomers who were selfish, actually.
Former Human Rights Commissioner Chris Sidoti told news.com.au that by evading tax, enjoying free tertiary education and imposing HECS debts on the generations that followed, boomers are the selfish ones. They’re responsible for the legions of “hard done by” young people entering the work force already debt-ridden and then having to borrow heavily to afford a home.
5. Millennials are money savvy in their own way.
Australian research shows that millennials do stick to budgets and spend a lot of time researching a purchase before buying. Also 52 percent of millennials prefer to pay with direct debit, 47 percent prefer debit and EFTPOS cards, and 40 percent prefer cash, with only 23% citing credit cards as their preferred payment method.
6. Smashed avocado is cheaper than you think.
Not sure where Bernard Salt eats his $22 smashed avocado and feta, but some Sydney University geography students found that the most expensive place in Sydney – Edgecliff, charged $18. Some (less ritzy) suburbs charged as little as $9.