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How different generations in the US spend their money

Marketers talk a lot about demographics, how to reach them, and what motivates them.

But if you really want to understand your target demographic, it helps to study their behaviors and attitudes around spending.

Not as easy as it sounds, of course.

But recent research from Visual Capitalist on spending in the US offers a valuable perspective on consumer spending across different generations.

Here are some interesting tidbits:

  • Gen X (born 1965–1980) spends the most money compared to other generations, cashing out $83,357 every year on average. Millennials (1991–1996) come in second with $69,061 on average annually.
  • Gen X also spends the most money on apparel, service, and personal care products.
  • All generations spend around 30% of their money on housing items. The second biggest spend is entertainment (4–5%), but obviously each generation buys different forms of entertainment.
  • The Silent Generation (1945 or earlier) spends most of their average annual income (15.8%) on healthcare.  Gen Z is on the opposite side, spending only 3.3%.
  • Gen Z spends the most on miscellaneous expenditures, making them a viable category for “cool,” non-essential items.

Of course, these are the takeaways that stand out to The Crew.

If you look at the graph you may have different conclusions…

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