According to a study released Tuesday by Bank of America, 71% of U.S. workers say their income has not kept pace with expenses.
The result is that most Americans no longer feel they are financially secure. According to Bank of America, 44% say they are financially secure, down from 57% in February.
According to federal data, the median hourly wage increased 5.2% in the last year from $30.76 to $32.36. During the same time, the Consumer Price Index increased by 8.3%.
The median weekly earnings were $1,067 a year ago. To keep up with inflation, weekly incomes should be $1,155. Instead, they are $1,107.
Essentially, Americans are earning $48 less a week than a year ago. Over the course of a year, that means our buying power has dropped $2,525, according to federal data.
The loss of real income means nearly half of U.S. employees have taken action to combat financial strain. Bank of America’s survey found that 21% have dipped into emergency savings, 21% are working additional hours, 20% are looking for higher-paying jobs and 6% have taken money from their retirement accounts.
Despite recent trends, 56% are confident in their financial well-being in two or three years.