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Nov. 28, 2021, 9:13 a.m. EST

These Americans are twice as likely to blow past their budget this holiday season

By Katherine Wiles

Whether it’s brought on by the dazzlingly bright lights or the warm fuzzy feelings around the holiday season, consumers tend to blow their holiday shopping budgets. And considering Americans are planning on spending more than $1,200 on average this year, that’s a lot of dough out the window.

That’s especially true for Generation Z, a new survey from credit-reporting company Experian found. Nearly half of respondents who said staying within their holiday shopping budget would be challenging were Gen Z.

Some 39% were Gen Z said the biggest financial barrier to holiday shopping would be simply running out of money, and 20% of respondents who said they didn’t have access to credit to purchase gifts were Gen Z.

Overall, members of Gen Z are twice as likely as other age groups to struggle with one financial barrier or another during their holiday shopping.

But Gen Z isn’t entirely alone in these holiday-shopping struggles. While much of the U.S. economy has recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic, some consumers are still feeling the effects from the economic downturn.

The survey found that nearly one-third (32%) of U.S. adults are facing a COVID-caused financial barrier that will prevent them from holiday shopping as planned.

Still, more than half of respondents said they spend too much on their holiday shopping.

And that overspending is making consumers uneasy: 30% said they were stressed, 26% said they were overwhelmed and 25% said they were anxious about holiday shopping this year.

But all that worry could lead to better finances; 45% of respondents said they were doing financial planning as 2021 comes to a close in order to prepare for the new year.

And Gen Z is especially concerned with improving their financial lot. Seventy-nine percent of Gen Z consumers said they’re motivated to improve their financial situation this holiday season.

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