As the military downsizes, America’s career servicemembers and their families are feeling increasingly worried about their near-term job security.
The April results of the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveal that 43 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. This represents a jump of 17 points since January and the highest level of concern recorded since the question was added to the monthly survey in spring 2013.
The April survey reveals that anxiety about sequestration remains high, with three out of five respondents saying they feel anxious. Three quarters of military families say they expect to be financially affected by anticipated cuts to defense spending.
Notably, the Index reveals that some specific job-related anxieties have eased for America’s career military. When survey respondents were asked “how is sequestration impacting you and your family,” they identified:
· Reduced possibilities for promotion (15 percent, down 15 points from March) and
· Increased likelihood to experience early separation or not serve to full retirement (15 percent, down seven points).
These numbers represent the lowest levels reported so far this year and may be a reaction to news reports that some lawmakers are resisting Department of Defense proposals to cut spending.