|09-19-2014, 01:30 PM||#1|
Yellen says low-income U.S. families `extraordinarily vulnerable` to financial setbacks
Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said the financial crisis showed that American families are “extraordinarily vulnerable” to financial setbacks to a conference on savings among low-income families on Thursday and failed to comment on the Fed’s most recent policy decisions.
Yellen`s remarks were delivered to a meeting of the Corporation for Enterprise Development a day after the Fed`s main policy committee decided to keep its current interest rate guidance intact.
The short statement by the Fed chair noted that the financial position of many low and middle income families remained below where it was before the 2007 to 2009 financial crisis as a result of depressed housing values and a drop in income.
She says a Fed survey finds that an unexpected expense of just $400 would force the majority of American families to borrow money, sell something or simply not pay.
She says the bottom fifth of households by income — about 25 million households — had net worth in 2013 of just $6,400 and many of these families had nothing saved or negative net worth.
In a speech delivered by video to a Washington conference, Yellen says there is a critical need to encourage people to take small steps to boost their savings.
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