Almost Half of Kentuckians Have No Savings Account

Feb 4, 2013

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A national anti-poverty organization ranks Kentucky 34th nationally  in the ability of its citizens to achieve financial security. The report was compiled by the Corporation for Enterprise Development.  Casey Wiedrich is senior program manager for applied research for CFED.

“You know less than 60 percent of households in Kentucky have a savings account," she says.

In other words, the non profit group says nearly half of Kentucky residents have almost no savings to fall back on in the face of job loss, health crisis, or other income depleting emergency.  While admitting Kentucky is home to a significant number of low income residents, Wiedrich says strategies to save money can still work.

“Even households with a low income, households can save and many of them do want to save," she says. "It’s often just sort of having the opportunity to sort of put that savings aside and sometimes having the infrastructure, even just the basic tools of saving.”

Wiedrich says CFED is not about the business of advising how to save money, whether say, to invest in stocks or purchase certificates of deposit.  Capping payday loan interest rates and implementing a state earned income tax credit are two policy suggestions promoted by some Kentucky groups.