Sequestration driving servicemembers to save more and spend less

| October 24, 2014

Members of America’s career military are increasingly responding to defense budget cuts by intensifying their frugal financial habits, with almost half now focused on saving more and spending less.

The latest results of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveal that 49 percent of middle-class military families are dealing with the cuts to defense spending by increasing the amount they are saving. This is the highest level recorded since the question was added to the survey in November 2012.

The Index reveals that 47 percent of survey respondents are cutting back on everyday spending, and holiday celebrations are becoming an even bigger target for spending cuts. First Command’s annual Thanksgiving spending survey reveals that 82 percent of families plan to cut back this year, up 20 points from the previous year. A similarly frugal trend is expected to emerge from the company’s upcoming holiday gift spending survey.

Other ways military families are responding to sequestration cuts include:

  • Decreasing the aggressiveness of investments (21 percent)
  • Moving investments to cash (13 percent)
  • Starting work with a financial planner (15 percent)

This growing focus on frugal living comes at a time when many servicemembers and their families are experiencing financial insecurity and worry related to defense downsizing and sequestration. September survey results reveal that three out of four career military families are anxious about cuts to defense spending and four out of five expect to be financially affected. Career concerns are at a record high, with more than half of survey respondents reporting that they are worried about their job security in the coming months.




Defense budget cuts influencing military voters in midterm elections

| October 21, 2014

Sequestration concerns are an important election issue for middle-class military families. The First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that 77 percent of middle-class military families say that changes to the DoD budget – specifically those that could potentially impact their military benefits, compensation and career – are extremely or very important in choosing who to vote for in the midterm elections.

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Marine Corps Marathon Start

Marine Corps Marathon: Did you know?

| October 20, 2014

Established in 1976 to promote goodwill between the military and the public after the Vietnam War, the Marine Corps Marathon is an annual event open to all runners 14 and up, making it one of the few large non-qualifier marathons in the U.S.

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DoD News

This week in DoD sequestration news

| October 17, 2014

Every day this week I’ve read articles by and interviews with people attending the 2014 AUSA Annual Meeting & Exposition. Not surprisingly, the recurring theme is that sequestration presents its own threat to the U.S.

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Career concerns surging in military families

| October 15, 2014

America’s career military is growing increasingly anxious about how defense downsizing and sequestration will impact their near-term job security. The First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that 50 percent of middle-class military families (senior NCOs and commissioned officers in pay grades E-6 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000) are concerned about their job security in the coming months.

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DoD News

This week in DoD sequestration news

| October 10, 2014

There has been increased talk lately from members of Congress about partial or full repeal of sequestration. On Sunday, October 5, CNN’s Candy Crowley interviewed Senators Lindsey Graham and Jack Reed.

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How to measure your net worth

| October 9, 2014

To succeed in anything, you need a baseline and a way to measure your progress. With personal financial planning, the best place to start may be to determine your “personal net worth.” This will help you get a big-picture view of the overall state of your financial life.

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DoD News

This week in DoD sequestration news

| October 3, 2014

After years of managing multiple combat tours and lengthy separations during wars in Iraq and Af­ghanistan, and a new conflict with ISIL, America’s career military is facing a set of family challenges that are just beginning to emerge from the deep military budget cuts of defense downsizing and sequestration.

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Annuities: Potential for income for life

| September 22, 2014

Depending on your goals, an annuity can be an important and advantageous part of your financial plan, but there are a lot of misconceptions about annuities in the marketplace today.

Annuities offer two distinct retirement-planning benefits.

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Demand for permanent life insurance growing in career military families

| September 15, 2014

Demand for permanent life insurance is growing in America’s career military, where almost seven in ten families now own this type of coverage, according to the latest findings of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®.

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