Study Says Even Savers Spend Their Refunds

Alden Wicker

tax refundThe refund checks are in the mail, and millions of Americans are feeling a bit flush this tax season.

(Still haven’t done your taxes? Start here.)

You might be one of the smart Americans who plan to use their refund to reach a financial goal. According to a TD Ameritrade survey, of the almost half of Americans expecting a check, 47% plan to save some of it and 44% plan to pay off debt with the money.

Only 15% wanted to use the whole thing to splurge on something discretionary.

While the savers will mostly go through with their plan, TODAY reports that they still might treat themselves to something, even unconsciously.

Research shows that there’s an immediate, though small, bump in spending among people who receive tax refunds the week they get it, even if they planned on saving it. Then there’s another small bump in spending in August, indicating people might be using the money to augment their summer vacation.

So you might as well make it official. Set aside 10% of your refund to treat yourself—you deserve it for navigating that tax maze! Then use the rest to help reach a financial goal or two.

  • Kathleen

    How will I spend my federal tax return..

    Paying my state tax bill
    Unfortunately I didn’t withhold enough state income tax from my unemployment check so now I owe and I’m still out of full time work.

  • Kody

    I’m a 1099 employee who puts a specified percentage of each check into a seperate account, this year after all of my deductions my husband and I got to keep everything I had saved, plus he received a refund as well. For us we put it all towards our life and DI insurance premiums.