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Navigating Financial Terrain: Challenges and Priorities of Millennials

The world has changed rapidly over the past few years, and many people have been affected financially. Among those hit the hardest are millennials, who have had to endure both recessions and pandemics.

Unlike other generations, millennials have struggled to access affordable housing, education, and jobs with decent salaries. Therefore, their financial stability has been disrupted, and they are forced to adapt to the challenges presented to them.

In this article, we will explore the concerns of millennials regarding their financial stability. We will also take a look at the disparity in financial goals between baby boomers, Generation Z, and millennials.

Additionally, we will examine the impact of recessions and pandemics on millennials’ financial outlook. Finally, we will discuss the policy and services that can help mitigate the financial struggles that millennials face.

Impact of Recessions and Pandemics

The recession of 2008 left a significant impact on millennials who were just starting their lives. Many millennials were graduating from college and expecting to find lucrative job opportunities.

However, that expectation was short-lived when the job market crashed, and many of them were left without opportunities. The pandemic has only exacerbated the issue.

With many businesses shutting down and laying off employees, the job market has become even more competitive. According to a survey by Pew Research, a staggering 61% of millennials have experienced unemployment, reduced hours, or wage cuts due to the pandemic.

With the job market in such a state, millennials have been forced to consider alternative means of income. Some have turned to the gig economy, freelance work, or starting their own businesses.

However, these opportunities come with uncertainty and instability.

Disparity in Financial Goals

Baby boomers and Generation Z have different financial goals than millennials. For baby boomers, their financial goals are centered around retirement, while Generation Z’s financial goals are primarily focused on saving for the future.

For millennials, it’s a mix of both. However, because of their living situations and accessibility, millennials have struggled to save money for the future.

Millennials are the first generation to have less wealth than their parents at the same age. This wealth disparity is primarily because of student loans, the rising cost of housing, and a more competitive job market.

Baby boomers had more access to affordable housing, free education, and job opportunities that paid a decent wage. On the other hand, millennials have had to navigate a job market that has a high level of competition and a lack of affordable housing.

Survey Findings on Millennials’ Attitude Towards Finances

A survey conducted by the National Center for Social Science Research sheds light on the attitudes of millennials towards their financial situation. The survey found that millennials feel anxious about their financial stability.

A majority of respondents said that they are unable to save money, and only a few are confident about their financial control. Furthermore, the survey found that rural workers struggle more with financial well-being than their urban counterparts.

Rural workers are more likely to have low-income jobs and less access to financial services. This lack of financial accessibility has made it more difficult for rural workers to save money and achieve financial stability.

Concerns of Millennials Regarding Financial Stability

Millennials have many concerns regarding their financial stability. The first concern is their anxiety about their financial status.

This anxiety is primarily because of the uncertainty that comes with a job market that is constantly changing and the high cost of living. Another concern is the financial well-being of millennial women in rural areas.

Millennial women in rural areas face more difficulty in achieving financial stability than their urban counterparts. They tend to earn lower wages and have less access to financial services.

Policy and Services for Circumstantial Disadvantages

The United States government has put in place policies and services to help alleviate financial struggles for millennials. These policies include student loan forgiveness, affordable housing initiatives, and grants to help start businesses.

However, there needs to be more support for rural workers and millennial women in rural areas. The government should consider creating programs that will encourage economic development in rural areas.

It could include providing tax incentives to businesses that create jobs in rural areas and improving broadband accessibility. Additionally, the government could create programs that will help millennial women in rural areas access financial services and provide funding for businesses owned by women.


Millennials have had to navigate a challenging financial terrain. They have had to deal with recessions, a pandemic, and a job market that is constantly changing and highly competitive.

However, with the right policies and services in place, millennials can still achieve financial stability. It is up to the government to create policies that will support millennial workers across the country, particularly in rural areas.

The future of millennials’ financial stability depends on the choices made by policymakers today.

Financial Goals and Priorities of Millennials

Millennials are known for their unique financial goals and priorities. Unlike previous generations, they prioritize experiences over material possessions, and they put emphasis on both short-term and long-term financial goals.

Millennials are confident about their future and are willing to take risks to achieve their aspirations.

Short-term vs Long-term Goals

One of the significant differences between millennials and other generations is how they prioritize their financial goals. Millennials believe in the importance of setting both short-term and long-term goals.

Short-term goals could include saving up for a vacation or a down payment on a car. Long-term goals, on the other hand, could involve saving up for retirement or buying a house.

Having both short-term and long-term goals is essential for millennials because it gives them a sense of purpose and helps them prioritize their spending. It also ensures that they are not just living for the moment but are actively planning for their future.

According to a survey conducted by Charles Schwab, 48% of millennials report that their top financial goal is saving for retirement, followed by paying off debt at 30%, and building an emergency fund at 25%. The data shows that millennials are aware of the importance of both short-term and long-term goals.

Budgeting and Spending Equally

Another important aspect of millennials’ financial goals is budgeting and spending equally. While millennials enjoy indulging themselves, they also realize the significance of living within their means.

Millennials’ financial goals revolve around maintaining a balance between saving and spending. Budgeting is a crucial aspect of financial management.

It allows millennials to monitor their expenses and ensures that they are not spending more than they should be. According to a survey by Fidelity, 80% of millennials have a budget compared to only 61% of baby boomers.

Millennials use a variety of tools to budget their finances, such as apps that track their expenses and banks that provide financial planning services. These tools make budgeting a lot easier and help millennials stay on top of their expenses.

Spending equally is also essential for millennials. While they enjoy traveling, experiencing new cuisines, and purchasing new gadgets, they also ensure that they spend money responsibly.

According to the same survey by Charles Schwab, 62% of millennials budget for leisure activities every month while also saving for long-term goals. They also prioritize spending on experiences rather than materialistic possessions.

Because of this, they are willing to save on clothing, accessories, and other possessions to invest that money towards travel or other meaningful experiences.


In conclusion, millennials prioritize both short-term and long-term financial goals and understand the importance of budgeting and spending equally. They realize the significance of living within their means while also enjoying everything life has to offer.

Millennials are aware that these choices will impact their future, and they remain committed to achieving their goals. To ensure a stable financial future, millennials must continue to balance their financial priorities and make informed decisions.

By prioritizing financial stability and taking steps to reach their goals, millennials can achieve their dreams and create a foundation for a prosperous future. In summary, millennials face unique financial challenges such as the impact of recessions, disparity in financial goals, concerns regarding their financial stability, and budgeting equitably for their short and long-term goals.

However, millennials are confident about their future and take a balanced approach to spending and saving. To help millennials reach financial stability, policies and services need to be set in place to promote inclusive economic development and provide access to financial services for all.

By balancing their priorities and making informed decisions, millennials can continue to achieve their financial goals and create a prosperous future for themselves and the generations to come.

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