Using numbers pulled from the Federal Reserve, U.S. Census Bureau and Internal Revenue Service, the Statistic Brain website found that the average American family had $3,800 in its savings account and $35,000 saved for retirement as of July 2014. That savings account figure falls well short of the six months of savings recommended by financial experts. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American household spent $51,000 annually in 2013. That's $4,258.33 each month, meaning the average household needs $25,550 in savings to cover six months worth of expenses as recommended by experts.
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The Importance of Saving
It's important to have emergency savings in case of job loss, emergency home repairs, lost income or because of illness and other unexpected and expensive events you might encounter. A 2014 survey released by Bankrate.com found that more than 25% of Americans haven't saved at all. A 2012 survey found 28% of Americans don't have an emergency fund. People in the 30- to 49-year-old age group are the least likely to have squirreled away an emergency fund. When you don't have money saved, you might need to use your credit card or take out a high-interest loan to cover emergency expenses. To help build up your savings, take advantage of market fluctuations such as lower gas prices or specials on groceries to put aside more money. An extra $50 or $100 a month to your savings account can add up over the course of a year, providing some financial security when disaster strikes.