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Three Quarters of Americans Financially Optimistic Looking to 2024, Yet Almost Half Say Rising Costs of Living Impacting Financial New Year's Resolutions - BMO Survey
  • Financial optimism is high for 2024, with 74 percent of Americans confident about their financial future over the next year – up from 68 percent this time last year.
  • About half (46 percent) of Americans are adjusting their New Year's money resolutions due to rising costs of living.
  • Year-over-year increase in the number of Americans who see themselves as better off today than a year ago – 44 percent compared to 38 percent in 2022.

CHICAGO, Dec. 11, 2023 /CNW/ - A special report from the BMO Real Financial Progress Index reveals that 74 percent of Americans are financially optimistic looking ahead to 2024 – more than a year ago (68 percent). BMO's index also found that nearly half (46 percent) say their New Year's financial resolutions have changed due to rising costs of living and inflation.

Top changes to 2024 New Year's money resolutions due to rising costs include:

  • More thrifty, frugal spending: 31 percent of Americans say they plan to minimize spending in 2024.
  • New budgets for a new year:  24 percent plan to create financial goals or a budget to follow in 2024.

Notably, 40 percent of Americans say they do not make New Year's money resolutions and 68 percent have no written financial plan, regardless of what time of year it is.

"These findings clearly show that a majority of Americans are feeling positive about their finances as the New Year approaches, even in a challenging economy," said Paul Dilda, Head of U.S. Consumer Strategy at BMO. "At the same time, with so many reporting they don't have a financial plan, we can't stress enough how important it is to begin defining your financial goals for 2024, evaluate monthly budgets in relation to the higher cost of everyday items, and set aside time to meet with your bank or financial advisor to help you make real financial progress in the year ahead."

Americans' financial confidence improves from last year as consumers outline goals

The index also highlights two notable year-over-year increases when it comes to how Americans view their financial situations:

  • Financial confidence improves: 71 percent of Americans are confident in their financial situation, up from 68 percent this time last year.
  • Americans feel better off: 44 percent say they are financially better off today compared to 38 percent a year ago. The number of Americans who say they are somewhat or much less secure also declined from last year – 26 percent today compared to 32 percent in late 2022.

Additionally, the BMO Real Financial Progress Index explores Americans' top financial goals:

  • Saving for retirement (59 percent).
  • Taking a vacation (45 percent).
  • Paying down debt (44 percent).
  • Making a major purchase such as a car or large appliance (41 percent).
  • Saving for children's expenses (28 percent).
  • Buying a home (25 percent).
BMO offers tips to make real financial progress in the New Year

In addition to creating a budget and sticking to it, BMO offers the following tips to help Americans make real financial progress and navigate rising costs of living:

  • Take advantage of the BMO Real Financial Progress Hub, a digital resource that allows customers to easily access personal finance advice and guidance, as well as tools and resources to reach their own specific financial goals.
  • Regularly meet with your banker or financial advisor to make sure your savings and payment patterns are on track to reach both near- and long-term goals.
  • Use free digital banking tools and apps to help track spending patterns and save.
  • Track your incoming and outgoing money flow as well as expenses that will help build the framework to create an accurate budget.
  • Establish and build credit with credit-building solutions such as a credit building loan or secure card – and monitor your credit report score and activity often.
  • Set up a savings goal and recurring savings transfers into an account – no matter the amount – which will provide a sense of progress and motivation to achieve your savings goal.
  • Make a budget or savings plan specifically for large purchases like a car, vacation, or new appliance.

To find out how BMO helps customers make financial progress, visit:

About the BMO Real Financial Progress Index

Launched in February 2021, the BMO Real Financial Progress Index is an indicator of how consumers feel about their personal finances and whether they are making financial progress. The index aims to spark dialogue that will help consumers reach their financial goals and to humanize a topic that causes anxiety for many – money.

The research detailed in this document was conducted by Ipsos in the United States from September 11 to October 9, 2023. A sample of n=2,502 adults ages 18+ in the United States were collected. Quotas and weighting were used to ensure the sample's composition reflects that of the American population according to census parameters. This survey has a credibility interval of +/- 2.2 per cent 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had all American adults 18+ been surveyed.

About BMO Financial Group

BMO Financial Group is the eighth largest bank in North America by assets, with total assets of $1.3 trillion as of October 31, 2023. Serving customers for 200 years and counting, BMO is a diverse team of highly engaged employees providing a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management, global markets and investment banking products and services to 13 million customers across Canada, the United States, and in select markets globally. Driven by a single purpose, to Boldly Grow the Good in business and life, BMO is committed to driving positive change in the world, and making progress for a thriving economy, sustainable future, and inclusive society.

SOURCE BMO Financial Group

For further information: Media Contact: Lucas Seiler,; 312-340-8576