personal-finance

Living paycheck to paycheck, or worse

Sep. 12, 2011 at 10:54 AM ET

A new survey confirms what many Americans already know from personal experience: Too many of us are living paycheck to paycheck.

The survey of more than 2,500 employed adults found that one-fourth said all their money was spoken for each month, leaving nothing for extras after bills and other expenses were paid for.

About one-third were in even worse shape, reporting that they don’t have enough money to make ends meet and end each month in the red.

The survey was conducted between Aug. 31 and Sept. 7 by Markco Media for the website CouponCodes4U.

Retailers have noticed it too. Speaking at an investor conference in May, a Wal-Mart executive said the mega-retailer has seen that some of their customers are particularly cash-strapped just before payday, which it blamed in part on the weak economy.

"We still see the paycheck cycle being very pronounced where the customer doesn't have a lot of money at the end of the month. They are going to smaller pack sizes; opening price point becomes more important," Wal-Mart Chief Financial Officer Charley Holley said at the Citi Global Consumer Conference.

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