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Budget anxiety spurs saving, survey shows

Feb. 28, 2014 - 06:01PM   |  
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Some career military members are hunkering down and increasing their short-term savings as anxieties swirl around the future of the Defense Department budget, according to a recent survey.

And they’re outpacing their civilian counterparts’ monthly short-term savings by an average of $503 extra each month, according to the most recent First Command Financial Behaviors Index survey of military members and the general population.

The military portion of the survey, covering the fourth quarter of last year, is limited to senior noncommissioned officers and commissioned officers in paygrades E-6 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000.

The survey is also limited in numbers: a random sampling of 530 people, including people up to age 70. Of those, 330 are from the general population and 200 are military.

In December, 41 percent of military families expected to be “extremely” or “very” affected by cuts to DoD spending, according to the survey, conducted by Sentient Decision Science, Inc. for First Command.

To beef up their financial situations, these senior NCOs and officers are using various tactics:

■ Cutting back on everyday spending (49 percent).

■ Increasing the amount they’re saving (36 percent).

■ Decreasing the aggressiveness of their investments (14 percent).

■ Moving investments to cash (11 percent).

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