Increasing Number of Consumers See Finances as a Significant Source of Stress

Affinity Credit Union’s Wellbeing and Your Wallet Index of NJ, NY, CT and PA adults shows the majority have a negative outlook on economy over the next 12 months

BASKING RIDGE, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Affinity Federal Credit Union (“Affinity”) released findings from its latest Wellbeing and Your Wallet Index, capturing sentiment around the overall financial wellbeing of consumers, a cornerstone of the culture within Affinity’s community. The Index analyzed results from a 39-question survey completed by 3,086 adults in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

The survey, completed in April 2023, addressed key financial wellbeing concerns including financial stress, the ability to pay for everyday staples and affording the cost of a life emergency.

Key findings include:

  • 55% of people somewhat or strongly agree finances are a significant source of stress. The number of people experiencing financial stress due to the economy or other factors rose eight percent from the Winter 2023 Wellbeing and Your Wallet Index. A significantly higher number of respondents from younger generations, compared to older generations, see their finances as a stressor. Additionally, 29% of people are concerned about having enough money to pay for food in the next month. Food security was the biggest concern for Millennials (37%) and Gen Z (36%) adults.
  • 47% of individuals remain optimistic about their financial future. Despite increasing financial stress, optimism remains steady quarter over quarter. Broken down by generation, Gen Z (57%) and Millennials (54%) adults were the most optimistic respondents. Baby Boomers (44%) and Gen X (43%) were least optimistic. Stepping back and looking at the broad economy, 60% stated they have a negative outlook over the next year.
  • Less than half of respondents feel confident about handling the cost of an emergency. Forty-nine percent of people were somewhat or strongly confident in their ability to cover costs related to an unforeseen life event, down nine percent from the winter survey. Older generations had a significantly higher self-assurance than younger people. Thirty-nine percent of those surveyed said building an emergency fund was a top financial priority, behind paying off debt (47%) and saving for retirement (46%).
  • 54% are taking on or strongly considering a second job or gig work to supplement their income. A side job or gig work was considerably more common among Millennials (70%), Gen Z (69%) and Gen X (62%), compared to Baby Boomers (35%) and the Silent Generation (23%).

“It’s clear that people are feeling more stressed about their finances in light of the current economy,” said Jacqui Kearns, Chief Brand and Wellbeing Officer at Affinity Federal Credit Union. “Through the Wellbeing and Your Wallet Index and our branch and online services, our goal is to continue providing resources and support to help individuals navigate these challenges and improve their financial wellbeing.”

Grant Gallagher, AVP, Head of Financial Wellbeing and Brand Communications at Affinity Federal Credit Union added: “It’s important to note that while there are concerns about finances and the economy, nearly half of individuals remain optimistic about their financial futures. We continue to see consistent findings across age groups in terms of optimism levels. As a member-owned institution focused on nurturing our members’ financial wellbeing, we do our utmost to provide guidance and support during tough economic times that are catered to meet individuals where they are at each stage of life.”

For more information on the survey and to view an infographic of the full survey results, please visit

Affinity partnered with Drive Research for the survey.

About Affinity Federal Credit Union

Affinity Federal Credit Union is a full-service financial institution, member-owned and community-focused, with a mission to nurture your financial wellbeing. With more than 20 branches across the tri-state area, Affinity is the largest credit union headquartered in the state of New Jersey, proudly ranking in the top 2% of all credit unions in terms of asset size1. The Affinity difference is about people helping people on a deeper level and understanding what YOU need to make your unique dreams a reality. For more information, please visit


Kara Lester

Gregory FCA for Affinity Federal Credit Union