Why should one know about Americans’ savings and spending? How much, and on what Americans spend and save affects the whole world because Americans are among the most prolific consumers in the world. Americans’ spending and savings thus affects the availability and price of goods and services, the supply of capital (savings) for investment, and the productivity of economies worldwide, among other conditions. On a personal and household level, Americans’ spending and savings shapes their present and future economic security and well-being. Knowing more about larger saving and spending patterns can offer people better perspective on their own habits.

1. What percent of the total income (gross income, before taxes) of Americans 65 and older comes from Social Security?
2. What percent of income do the richest 20% and the poorest 20% (in income) of Americans spend on food, respectively?
3. Americans spend the most on which of the following goods?
4. What is the average credit card debt per U.S. household?
5. What percentage of American workers in private industry with access to a defined contribution plan for retirement (such as a 401k) do not participate?