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July 27th, 2009
07:26 AM ET

Spending & Saving

Have you changed your spending and saving habits because of the recession?

soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Jack Medley

    Fix big business, then maybe Americans can live better. They say, leave them alone, and they will create more jobs? Well, they create more bonuses to give their executives, not boost workforce. I want my government to step in, I want those that are bleeding this country dry to be shut down. Business Law is broken and needs to be fixed. No more $150 Million bonuses, no more closed factories to save executive positions... NO MORE.

    Maybe CNN should do FULL EXPOSURE reports on all the CEO's that are raping this country. That are taking outrageous profits from dying companies. Basically, do some real news and stop with the tabloid journalism.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:13 am |
  2. Steve-Mich

    Of course.
    Cost of living continues to rise or stay at high levels that rose over the past 8 yrs. Raises are almost non-existent, while hundreds of thousands have lost jobs, reducing income to poverty level or lower for hundreds of thousands of families just in Michigan.
    Any gas price over 2.25/gallon is painfully high for most families that need to commute for work, or take kids to school, church, stores, etc.
    Last summer at $4.30/gallon im sure put some people literally in bankruptcy or had to quit jobs because it cost too much.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:16 am |
  3. Ramona Green

    We as a country have always overindulged in frivolous things( 52 in screen t.v's, $3.00 coffees, lottery tickets, mortgages out of our price range, etc.) Now that we are unable to allow ourselves these luxuries, our life is in turmoil. What ever happened to simple living, even if you have the funds to indulge, exhibit restraint.

    This comment is not intented to offend, just to point out our behavior that we need to be responsible for.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:30 am |

    Since the recession my goal is to pay off my debt and start an emergency fund.Iam almost out of credit card debt and very happy about that.I pray that the unemployed will be working soon.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:30 am |
  5. James Ruffner

    I have not changed my spending habits. I pay cash (credit cards paid in full at the end of the month) for all but the most major consumer goods/ products, e.g., homes. Which is why I have no debts.

    I was happy to see that Christine Romans saw the connection between our incessant buying (WalMart at work) from China and then borrowing from them. If China wishes to be a trading partner with us, they must let their currency float.


    July 27, 2009 at 9:32 am |
  6. carolynn

    yes. as a single woman used to have takeout delivered about 4 days a week @ $20/visit. That turned out to be over $200/month; $2,400/year. I couldn't believe it!! It definitely was time to shift my priorities.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:38 am |
  7. Wendy

    Yes, of course we are cutting back. No big trips in hotels for one year. We're going to save for one year and pay cash only for what we need and pay off our credit cards every month (which we've always done but the monthly statements will be a lot lower than usual.)

    We visit family and friends and stay with them instead of a hotel somewhere else and just enjoy where they are and being with them.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  8. michael armstrong sr.

    Theres plenty of people changing there spending habits because they dont have no money to spend or save .

    July 27, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  9. Cindy North

    No our spending has not changed because of the recession. Our spending changed about 7 years ago when we started boycotting foreign made goods.

    All of these companies that in-sourced then out-sourced their labor have wiped out their own market place. Their cheep labor can’t afford their products and neither can the sea of the jobless and under employed here in the United Sates that they left behind.

    The big industrial machine has devoured its own spoils leaving a nasty after taste in its mouth of poverty producing greed.

    July 27, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  10. Mary

    As I watch the news about the Stimulus, I wonder why my grandaughter who has 4 children, one born a month ago with a severe disability can not recieve any income because a Tanf check is taken away after 24 months.She has no income and hasn't had income for a year. She finally found an apartment after a year of being homeless, but she has no money for the deposit and no angency ion this city will her. Why is she not eligible for some stimulus money, afterall she really needs help. Yet the stimulus has not changed her situation. I voted for Oboma because I belived that he would change things, but it seems that my family as needy as we can be are ignored and the system shows no sympathy.

    July 27, 2009 at 10:04 am |
  11. Billy

    As our President mentioned in his speech, some officials on both sides have said they don’t want a government intervention in a medical plan stating; “It is too costly”! Well, can someone or anyone at CNN please explain once and for all to the American public what the medical and retirement plans are that all our elected officials have that we pay for in our congress and the senate?

    I think if we could level the playing field and the people of America could vote and put all our elective officials on any one of our plans that’s out there for us regular folks, we’d have a proper medical and retirement plan for everyone in America (including our elected officials in the congress and the senate) before or by the end of December 2009!!!

    July 27, 2009 at 10:16 am |
  12. Sophia

    I am not spending at ALL as I am unemployed and I am struggling with mortgage and car payments. I am a 40 year old single mother and this is the worst time in my life. My hope is that the Obama administration would stop targeting specific industries in a negative fashion which has caused fear and many job losses. When is Obama going to do what he said he would do on the campaign trail; CREATE JOBS??!!!! I'm praying and hoping that promise will be the priority NOW. Americans must get back to work for this country to strive and lead again. I assure you we have changed in our spending and we will SAVE.

    July 27, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  13. Jilky Musick

    I think we all have, since the start of the recession I have spent more on alcohol then I have in the last ten years combined. And that's not a joke.

    July 27, 2009 at 10:43 am |
  14. David

    Its hard to say. I have reduced spending but have had to dip into savings. Saving though is a good thing as it allows you to make bigger purchases when you do get around to doing that. Those purchases tend to be better planned and for longer term items. In the long haul increased spending and saving go hand in hand.

    July 27, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  15. Russ Dow

    The United States of America has preserved it's heritage in the Smithsonian, among other great institutions around the country.
    Unfortunately, one of our greatest achievements, and still the fastest passenger ship ever created, lies in Philadelphia harbor, wasting away with her name still visible: SS UNITED STATES.
    Restoring this ship to some level of functionality, even getting her seaworthy, would create lots of jobs for skilled Americans, and instill new pride in our heritage. The project could be profitable (at least in government terms) through visitor or passenger spending while enjoying the spectacle of a renewed symbol of American ingenuity and pride.
    Private concerns have been interested over the years, but only the Feds can fund this project without the fiscal restraints of the boardroom. It's a great stimulus project compared to some others I have seen reported by CNN and other media outlets.

    July 27, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  16. Karl

    Well, I just took out a whopping mortgage on a new house, so I guess the answer is, yes, my spending habits have changed. But finally I think I'm starting to invest in the right things. And, like Buffet says, others were scared of buying, so it was time to act boldly, and we got a great place to live, a real gift, that we can both sustain and give to our kids years down the road. But yes, I and my wife have steady jobs to back it up.

    New home sales as you've reported could be good news, not because it stimulates the housing business but because people are investing in quality of life.

    And this relates to bird watching because finding a good house and bird watching both relate to "quality of life" rather than "economic growth." These two realities are more often opposed than the same. In this respect, Heidi, I take vehement exception to your suggestion that a bird watching road is not good use of stimulus money. It may not "stimulate" economic growth as much as say a road project connecting us to the next K-Mart, but it will stimulate the quality of life which has been so lacking over the past fifty or more years while we've been frantically making junk nobody, in their right minds, would want, buying crap nobody needs, and going broke... stimulating the economy.

    Maybe if more of us were bird watching rather than stock market watching, we would not be in such a mess as we tread like mad to keep our heads above the proverbial swamp.

    Heidi, think beyond the economic charts for a second; creating the birdwatching road is rightly focused. I'm not a birdwatcher but I used to be. And I regret I dropped it because I used to be happier and healthier. I was saving the health care system lots of money. Most important, I was less consumed with consuming useless stuff so those people making the stuff I didn't need could take time off to watch the birds.

    July 27, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  17. Jeanne Marie Rowan

    No, my spending habits have not changed during this recession, for my husband and I first pay ourselve by putting money into savings each payday and then we live within our means. Simply, we do not spend more than what we earn. Yes, we do have debt. We have one mortgage and two car loans within our family budget. We have diligently practiced this personal financial mantra for over 25 years. When all else fails, I recommend that couples (singles too) put their budgeted cash or a check for the total sum of each bill into separate envelopes and then balance your checkbook each and every month to ensure you know where every dollar you earn is spent! We received this sound advice from our depression era parents and grandparents.

    July 27, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  18. Alan D Simpson


    First I'll tell you I'm disalbed! I live on SSI disabilty.YES I'm living on less.Medication and doctors are exspensive even with Medicare and a Supplement insurence plan witch is also exspensive.Food and outher things come second!! Do I have anything to save NO!!!!! At the end of the month I still have more bills at the end of my money.#1Medicare pays at the poverty level even with a yearly raise witch Medicare gets most of it .I think lawmakers should look back at 2000 to 2008 and Bush Cheney Aministration and see why we are in this mess!!!!!!!!! I hope this promps people think when Bush and Cheney left office they left Americans with a debt of TEN TRILLION DOLLAR DEBT!!!!!!!!! Why didn't lawmakers do something then,Now look where we are now, if your wealthy it's a party if your poor nothing.


    July 28, 2009 at 12:40 am |
  19. ariella.heart

    Vick served his time. He should be able to play at the start of the season. I mean he's already on probation. The only reason he is still receiving consequences is because he's considered a celebrity. Its definitely not fair.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  20. Elizabeth

    No way.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:38 pm |
  21. RusRus

    I now only buy food from the local farmers market, and refuse to spend any money with any large corporate entity, the bigger they are the less likely they are to have me as a costumer.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  22. Mark

    I installed a wind turbine on my house, and converted my old Ford Bronco to electric, which I now charge from my wind turbine, so I keep all the money I used to spend on energy. Even after making payments on the loan to purchase the equipment I needed for the conversion I have over $400 left in my pocket each month. I have 24 payments left after which time I will have absolutely no energy costs ever again. In addition I do not polute ( I should get a tax credit paid for by oil companies), or give EXXON any more of my hard earned money. The conversion was very simple and easy to do, and if I could get a business loan I would start my own business doing this for other people. However I am not an oil company so I can't get loans or help from anybody.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  23. DJ from NYC

    I have most certainly curbed my spending habits. The areas of spending most affected that has resulted in a surprising boon to my savings are: (1) dating; and (2) weekends at a favorite jazz lounge. Specifically, I limit dating to women who are exceptionally close to what I seek in a woman AND are not cheap. With the number of free, outdoor jazz concerts during the summer, I spend far less than I would in a lounge drinking up overpriced cognacs.

    There has also been changes in grocery spending which has encouraged me to slim down and tone up.

    July 30, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  24. Renae

    I think it is shamful. They can fly on the same commercial planes as the rest of us. Which in turn would help the countrie's economy.
    Them buying government planes will not only cost us million to purchuse the planes but millions in fuel, millions to staff ect. Why would they want to take this away from the public sector and add more burden on Americans in taxes to fund this plane program. I thought they just got rid of THE CLUNKER CARS for one reason was because of how much fuel they burned ????? What is wrong with them. No what is wrong with us not emailing and writtting our representative and saying enough is enough.

    August 6, 2009 at 10:01 am |