What the industry commonly calls HENRYs, (High Earning, but Not Rich Yet) young people who make strong prospective clients for many advisory practices, the CFP Board calls “concerned strivers.”
In a new series of surveys, the CFP Board has divided Americans into distinct groups based on their saving patterns and financial outlook: concerned strivers, stretched worriers, confident savers and tentative savers, each representing roughly one-quarter of the U.S. adult population.
One segment, the concerned strivers, is optimistic about their financial futures despite having difficulty navigating between the need to save on a monthly basis and paying down their debts. This segment made up 27 percent of the CFP Board’s respondents, making them the largest consumer segment in the country by a narrow margin.
Concerned strivers tend to be in their mid-to-late 30s with above-average incomes and relative optimism about their future financial security, yet they’re struggling to save money to achieve their financial goals -- mainly due to financial demands like mortgage, credit card and college payments.
"The concerned striver has many day-to-day challenges that make it hard for them to save with any regularity," says Eleanor Blayney, CFP Board consumer advocate, in released comments. "Concerned strivers feel like they can deal with the immediate needs of their families, but may neglect saving for their own future. They have good intentions, adequate resources and employer-sponsored retirement plans, yet they feel they are unable to capitalize on these financial strengths."
Nearly all concerned strivers place a high importance on saving, but are concerned with their ability to save. In fact, 60 percent of this client segment believes it is extremely important to save money, but despite their high incomes only half of this group is saving on a regular basis.
Roughly one-third of concerned strivers, 31 percent, believe that they are behind in meeting their own retirement goals.
Nevertheless, the CFP Board says that this segment feels like they know how to fix their finances, as more than two-thirds of concerned strivers said that they were confident in their understanding of how to best save money.
Nearly 70 percent of concerned strivers have access to an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan.
Compared with the other population segments, concerned strivers along with tentative savers represent a mid-point in financial security. Stretched worriers are consumed with trying to make ends meet and are more likely to live paycheck to paycheck, and confident savers are receiving professional advice and saving regularly.