Employee Financial Stress Has Many Sources

Older couple reviewing paperwork at a restaurant.

A recent MetLife survey asked employees about their top sources of financial stress.

It found that employees have very different short and long-term financial stressors. Slow wage growth and rising living costs are often the root causes of this stress.

Employers focus on helping both short and long-term stressors when creating benefits plans.

Long Term Financial Stressors

Two-thirds of employees said that their top financial concerns center around old age. Fears of medical costs and outliving retirement savings were the most worrisome.

Old couple sitting together in doctor's office.

Life expectancy continues to rise. As a result, many people likely won’t have enough saved for a safe and healthy retirement.

Unfortunately, saving for retirement affects short-term responsibilities. Paying off debt and paying bills have to happen before meaningful retirement contributions.

Employees often struggle to balance monthly expenses and long-term goals.

Short Term Financial Stressors

In the short-term, employee financial stress often comes from unexpected expenses. A sudden change to income means they wouldn’t know how to pay their bills.

Unoccupied hospital bed.

Similarly, a large medical bill could throw things into unbalance.

Americans’ saving habits reflect this stress. More than half of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings.

How Employers Can Help

Voluntary employee benefits may be the answer to employees’ financial woes. For some, financial flexibility is more important than strict financial education and wellness.

Voluntary benefits can help employees plan both for the future and short-term expenses. Additionally, these benefits work alongside existing retirement plans.

Examples of voluntary benefits employers can offer include HSAs, student loan help, and budget apps.

Are you offering voluntary benefits to employees?


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