Does Saving Money Make You Happy?

Ally Bank published the results of their recent online survey (1,025 adults over 25) on savings and happiness, and –surprise! — they found that happiness correlates directly with the amount of money a person has saved. More specifically, 57% of people with over $100,000 saved are happy, vs. 34% of those with less than $20,000.

Now, I do love and use Ally Bank but it should be noted that 1. they are a BANK that specializes in high-yield savings accounts, and 2. correlation does not equal causation. But per this Yahoo Finance article, Ally’s not-exactly-scientific findings are in keeping with other research:

Joe Kable at the University of Pennsylvania is a neuroeconomist doing research into what happens in our brains when we make choices about money. He says people who make smart “discounting” decisions — those who trade cash offers today for better cash offers in the future — also are good at making other long-term choices. They eat better, get divorced less often, and are less prone to addictions. In other words, people who are good with money are also healthier and happier; they are better at thinking of the future.

Not that I needed Science to tell me that people who have their lives together are more likely to have their lives together, but fair.

Now if anyone can help inspire me to finally call Ally Bank and get them to reset the password on the savings account I accidentally locked myself out of three months ago, that would be wonderful.

Photo: bradipo

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13 Comments / Post A Comment

@Meaghan, It is 1 Thing Thursday…

andnowlights (#2,902)

@Heather Yamada-Hosley I was coming to say the SAME THING!

KatNotCat (#766)

Saving does make me happy. It makes me feel secure and proud of myself.

However, I imagine having the means to be able to save $100,000 would make me really, really happy.

pinches (#3,520)

@KatNotCat That sense of security is one of the most invaluable feelings to have, ever.

bgprincipessa (#699)

@KatNotCat I thought the same thing. That just seems… out of this world, to me.

jennonthego (#5,366)

I’d venture to guess that anyone who has the ability to save $100K probably doesn’t worry about having food on the table or buying new shoes for kids whose feet have grown. So that probably has a little more to do with happiness than the actual dollar amount in the bank.

Meaghano (#529)

@jenninthecity AGREED

Eric18 (#4,486)

@jenninthecity Or maybe they did at one point in their lives and through excellent financial planning they no longer have those worries. But I’m sure they have other, just as significant worries.

Vib G Yor (#3,566)

Does retirement savings count toward that $100,000, or is that just personal savings account money? I wonder if there’s a difference between having money you can’t touch for years vs. having a high amount of liquid cash on hand.

Meaghano (#529)

@Vib G Yor Good point! I don’t usually think of my retirement savings in the same, self-soothing way I do my regular savings. But the idea that I have anything saved for retirement (though not much…) does give me responsible / on top of things feeling, if not actual security.

NoName (#3,509)

@Vib G Yor Keeping 100K in a savings account sounds extremely inefficent to me. The rate of return on thst would be miniscule compared to other investments. I only keep about 1.5 months takehome pay as an emergency cash reserve in savings, everything else in bonds and index funds.

One year, I saved $4,000 and I was amazed with myself.

Yes it makes me happy and confident. The sense of security makes you happy.

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