Does Gen Z finance differ from other generations? In some ways, yes — in others, probably not. But Gen Z is perhaps the first generation in history to experience an emphasis on financial literacy education in public schools, as many states have mandated some sort of financial education in schools around the country.
Even if millennials, Gen Xers, or Baby Boomers received enough financial education in school to try and contend with the modern financial landscape, or at least nail down some money management skills and smart debt management strategies, the modern world is drastically different for members of Gen Z than it was even for millennials, say, 20 years ago. The world has changed. The calculus has changed, and as such, Gen Z finds itself trying to navigate an ever-changing and never-before-seen modern financial landscape.
What’s different for Gen Z?
While the world is different in innumerable ways for Gen Z compared to, say, the Baby Boomer generation, Gen Z is facing particularly novel concerns. That could include climate anxiety, COVID-19’s financial impact, and even family financial influence for those coming from homes that never recovered from the Great Recession.
More specifically, though, here are a couple of key considerations for the Gen Z cohort to think about:
Costs are up
While we just went through a bout of inflation that hasn’t been seen in decades, Gen Z, while trying to find its financial legs, will need to contend with higher costs of living. That includes housing, education, food, and much more. While each and every generation is now paying more for basic staples, Gen Z spending habits and Gen Z financial independence may suffer as a result of recent price increases more than others.
Digital age finance
Gen Z is also the first generation that is fully growing up in the digital age, and all of the advantages and disadvantages that has to offer. While Gen Z wealth management may be easier thanks to a handful of apps and platforms on the market, it may be more difficult to contend with financial anxiety or implement savings strategies when you’re distracted by stock-trading apps and more.
It’s a whole new world, and we’re all figuring out how to navigate it.
Finding economic success and financial success for Gen Z
While it’s clearly a whole new world, and Gen Z will need to figure out how to contend with it in a financial sense, there’s reason to believe that many, if not most members of the generation will find solid financial footing at some point. Again — it won’t be easy. But Gen Z does have an advantage: They’re receiving financial education and gaining financial literacy faster than any previous generation.
Money Vehicle and other programs are being utilized like never before. That means Gen Z and other young people are entering adulthood with a background in financial knowledge. They’re building financial plans and implementing them. They’re thinking about their financial futures. They know they have a tough road ahead.
Perhaps more so than the generations before them. That’s a good thing, and hopefully, will translate to financial success in the future.
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