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Whether they’re putting it aside for a rainy day or a big getaway, a recent survey finds more Americans this year plan to save – not spend – their tax refunds.
According to NRF’s Tax Returns Consumer Survey conducted by BIGinsight, 43.8 percent of those expecting refunds will stash some of their cash in savings, up from 42.1 percent who said so last year and the most in the survey’s nine-year history. Two-thirds of tax payers are expecting a refund this year, the same as last year.
“After a rocky few years, consumers are now more vigilant about how they spend their money and the importance of preparing for future financial stability,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Increased consumer savings proves extremely beneficial to shoppers and businesses in the long run, allowing future opportunities to invest in a large household item or even take advantage of a well-deserved family vacation.”
According to the survey, nearly four in 10 Americans who expect a tax refund will use some of the money to pay down debt and 28.7 percent plan to use their “free cash” for everyday expenses. A few will throw caution to the wind and use their refund for a major purchase, such as a car or new television (12.3 percent) and vacation (11.3 percent).
“For some, tax season is a way to reward themselves, for others it is the perfect opportunity to get ahead on their bills or other expenses,” said Pam Goodfellow, BIGinsight consumer insights director. “Whatever the decision, many consumers this year are looking forward to taking back some of their hard-earned money from Uncle Sam.”
The NRF 2012 Tax Returns Consumer Survey polled of 8,716 consumers from Feb. 1 to 8.
The National Retail Federation represents retailers of all types and sizes, including chain restaurants and industry partners, from the United States and more than 45 countries abroad.