More than three-fourths (78%) of “mass affluent” consumers in the US have not changed their credit-card payment behavior because of the recession, but Hispanics and younger members of this well-to-do group are most likely to say they have, according to a report from Mintel.
The research reveals that the majority of mass affluents (62%) pay off the balances on all their credit cards each month. Only a small minority (5%) pay the minimum amount due.
However, though most mass affluents are paying off their credit cards each month, many nonetheless feel deeply affected by the faltering economy:
- More than half (55%) say they’ve cut down or deferred overall spending because of the recession.
- Only 48% of total mass affluents say they currently “feel financially secure.”
- Slightly more than one-third (36%) of Hispanic mass affluents report feeling “financially secure.”
Hispanics, Under 45s Feel Pinch Most
Of the 12% of mass affluent respondents who say they have changed their payment behavior, 11% of those who formerly paid credit card balances in full each month now don’t, while 11% are now making smaller monthly payments.
Younger mass affluent consumers, especially those under age 45, are more likely to be making smaller payments each month, while 50% of mass affluent Hispanics say they’ve changed their payment behavior.
Mass affluent households, as defined by Mintel, are those with between $100,000 and $1 million in investable assets. According to Mintel, these households currently comprise 10% of the US population.