WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – Nearly two-fifths of American families are struggling to get by.

A study released Monday by the Consumer Federation of America and the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. found that 38 percent of families are living paycheck to paycheck.

The survey also found that those who have prepared a personal financial plan feel more confident with managing their money, savings, and investments than those who have not made a plan.

“Our survey clearly shows that having a personal financial plan helps both rich and poor achieve their financial goals, Stephen Brobeck, CFA’s executive director, said in a press release. “Having a financial plan increases one’s confidence and effectiveness in managing, borrowing, and saving money.”

Of the 1,508 households surveyed, a paltry 34 percent believe they would be able to retire by the age of 65, while only 30 percent said they felt comfortable financially.

More than half of the respondents are worried about investing their money during the economic crisis.

“Consumers understandably are more nervous about investing their money given revelations about financial fraud, manipulation and about of clients,” Kevin R. Keller, CEO of the CFP Board, said in a press release. “This doesn’t mean that people shouldn’t create a financial plan and be prepared. We encourage consumers to do their homework and find a financial professional who always puts the clients’ best interests first and abides by a fiduciary standard of care.”

Princeton Survey Research Associates International conducted the survey.


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