26 Million Americans Are Now "Too Poor To Shop" Study Finds

Tyler Durden's picture

A new study finds that roughly 26 million Americans remain "too poor to shop". The study, performed by America's Research Group, found that about 26 million Americans work on average two or three jobs at a time which, when added together, nets just shy of $30,000 in annual income. All while supporting anywhere from two to four children.

The chairman of ARG, Mr. Britt Beemer, said in an interview with the NY Post that he first started looking into data when he was tracking a different indicator. Beemer first started tracking a group and surveying roughly 15,000 people to determine who had not finished Christmas shopping in 2014. During that year, the number was 21 percent but recently ran as high as 29%. From there Beemer decided to analyze the data further and learned American's are seeing increasing numbers of fellow citizens who are simply just too poor to shop.

Beemer told the Post: "The poorest Americans have stopped shopping, except for necessities" and "It's scary when you start to see things that you've never seen before"..."People are so pessimistic about their future"

Just this past April we wrote: "most Americans' savings continue to decline, and millions of US households not only don't have any money left over to save away, but are forced to resort to credit to fund day to day expenses."

Recall from January the piece from the Atlantic that review that weak state of American's finances. The Atlantic learned that nearly 50% of Americans were not in a position to find $400 to pay of a doctor visit without reaching out to friends So not only are 26 million Americans too poor to shop, there are also 2/3 of Americans who have no savings.

"Various surveys that I have talked about in the past have found that more than 60 percent of all Americans are living to paycheck to paycheck, but I didn’t realize that things were quite this bad for about half the country. If you can’t even come up with $400 for an unexpected emergency room visit, then you are just surviving from month to month by the skin of your teeth. Unfortunately, about half of us are currently in that situation."

As The NY Post details, retailers have blamed the weather, slow job growth and millennials for their poor results this past year, but a new study claims that more than 20 percent of Americans are simply too poor to shop.

These 26 million Americans are juggling two to three jobs, earning just around $27,000 a year and supporting two to four children — and exist largely under the radar, according to America’s Research Group, which has been tracking consumer shopping trends since 1979. “The poorest Americans have stopped shopping, except for necessities,” said Britt Beemer, chairman of ARG.


Beemer has been tracking this subgroup for two years, ever since his weekly surveys of 15,000 consumers picked up that 21 percent of consumers did not finish their Christmas shopping in 2014 due to being too busy working.


That number grew to 29 percent last year, and Beemer dug in to learn more about them, calling them on holidays. He estimates that this group has swelled from 6 million households four years ago, because their incomes have not kept pace with expenses like medical costs.


Nearly half of all Americans have not seen an increase in salary over the last five to seven years, and another 28 percent have seen their take-home pay reduced by higher medical insurance deductions or switching to part-time jobs, ARG found. “It’s scary when you start to see things that you’ve never seen before,” said Beemer.


“People are so pessimistic about their future.” Most of those living on the edge — 68 percent are women between the ages of 28 and 38 — work in retail or in call centers, according to Beemer.


Another sign that a chunk of the population has pulled back its spending is that discounters like Walmart and the Dollar Store have been “holding their own,” said Richard Church, managing director of Discern Securities.

The story of the increasing difficulty facing Americans in maintaining their standard of living continues... even after almost 10 years of Federal Reserve market-based intervention.

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Aristotle of Greece's picture
Aristotle of Greece (not verified) Jul 8, 2016 8:02 PM

America is NEVER getting better.

mofio's picture

Real sad.

santafe's picture
santafe (not verified) mofio Jul 8, 2016 8:03 PM

We need a clean slate of politicians. NO re-election.

cdevidal's picture

Time to stop shopping for everything. Makes us dependant. Bring back the Victory Garden. Even in the inner city you can find little vacant lots, share with someone else, or shoot, a tomato in a pot would save millions in food stamps if everyone did it.

erkme73's picture

Mofio = Santafe = Greek.  All three personalities in the same article, each stroking the other.  A spammer's delight.

Montani Semper Liberi's picture

 WTF Tylers? Do you guys ever take a look at the comments section to your articles? Have you not noticed these dirtbag serial spammers using your site to generate traffic to their POS website? They're easy to spot since they have an overwhelming collection of downvotes, and what with their jumping to the top of the cue on nearly every article you publish within seconds of their appearance!

 One last question Tylers:

 Did I make a $50 donation to this site last week (not my first) just to help enable these pieces of human excrement?

 I expect no answer because the site administrators no longer seem to give a shit anymore.

 When was the last time anyone has seen a Tyler Durden post in the comments section?


HRH of Aquitaine's picture
HRH of Aquitaine (not verified) Montani Semper Liberi Jul 9, 2016 4:28 AM

I agree. This site is almost as bad as Infowars. I gave up on Infowars due to all of the spam and the anti-Semites and white supremacists. Blaming the "Jews" for everything and claiming that the world is anti-white gets old, fast. When that is someone's repeated, and singular argument, for anything and everything, it is a sign of mental incompetence and the inability to accept responsibility for one's own life and the result of one's choices. Blaming other people for your personal failiures is a sign of weakness.

Badly moderated sites die a slow death. As I said, I don't go to Infowars these days, for that very reason. Will I continue to post here? For much longer? Probably not. Would I donate money? Oh hell no!

CPL's picture

No, they aren't fucking being invited.  Period.  You know exactly why as well.  Suck it up and accept the fact that's the situation.  They meddled, they pay the price.  It's that simple.  We let them all die for their stupidity and start from scratch and when this map stops updating.


Then we go back and rebuild again without the jews meddling.  Catch any jews going through the gates, they are getting dumped into the void.

michelp's picture

"Then we go back and rebuild again without the jews meddling. "

A good start would be to forbid anyone with dual-citizenship to hold any political or government post.


frenzic's picture

Nobody here except you has anything against palestianians so what is your problem? Nobody will miss your posts. Keep denying what's out there for the world to see. The constant shilling from people like you is getting tiresome and is losing it's effectiveness quickly. Enjoy your day in the sun because many of those white people you hate so much won't stand for this much longer. En garde.

Flagit's picture


Blaming the "Jews" for everything and claiming that the world is anti-white gets old, fast.


You fucking idiot. They ARE the problem!

PavlovPup's picture

People proving your point Aquitane. 


HRH of Aquitaine's picture
HRH of Aquitaine (not verified) PavlovPup Jul 9, 2016 5:16 PM

I knew I would take heat with that comment.

The follow-up comments, and conclusions, about my point of view are nothing less than stunning.

Vorenus Pullo's picture

Saw it recently. Engaged more than one poster.

Reality Creator's picture

We are now totally reliant on the corporations for everything we need in life to live, we don't fashion anything for ourselves anymore, not in the last few generations. No one has the skills anymore to do anything but push the red button at work and then to go shopping -- modern day skills that are simple, uninspiring and last only so long as the fiat flows. We are so fucked!

I moved out of San Diego and became a homesteader in Oregon using my skills learned at a young age growing up on a farm in Vermont. Perhaps there are a few people (the 1%?) who can live a little outside the [corporate] box, but I still by all sorts of corporate goods to survive. Long live diesel!

cdevidal's picture

It's taking us a while, but we're doing that. Chronic fatigue has slowed me but it won't stop me.

Nobody For President's picture
  1. Yeah, I did the homestead thing from a professional job in the City 43 years ago, using the stuff I learned from my logger dad, whose Dad was an Oregon homesteader (Little Santiam Valley) in the 19teens. You used 1% living a little outide the box, but I think, looking at US demographics, it is closer to 2%, which to be sure is still not a hell of a lot... I don't shop  much any more - one, I'm bad at it, two I don't like it, and three, I've already got too much stuff. Long gardens and fruit trees (apples and pears) plus the usual beans, bullets. and precious. But I'm 77 and gonna be alone on the homestead by the end of next month when daughter moves away (again). with a good man and my blessings. I doubt I will see TEOTWAWKI, which is just as well. But if it comes, I'm ready enough, but don't much give a shit about whether I 'make it' or not - but I do have a place to make a stand.

And the concluding line to the article: The story of the increasing difficulty facing Americans in maintaining their standard of living continues... even after almost 10 years of Federal Reserve market-based intervention.


As IF the FED gives a shit about Americans maintaining there standard of living.

beemasters's picture

"The poorest Americans have stopped shopping, except for necessities"

So what's wrong with that??? Should the [poorest] people continue shopping for things they don't need?

Sudden Debt's picture

and 2 to 4 kids...

If you only have money for a coke, don't order the steak.

4 kids cost a shitload of money to raise proper. And if you're broke, don't have 4 kids and expect others to pay for it!!

quartshort's picture

OMG I wish this was common knowledge.Nope. 75%+ of the kids in my children's school are on free/reduced lunch. 98% of the people are white per census. Practically Canada. I keep hearing about the mexicans over running the system. HA! I lived in way southern colorado for 3 years. Most are the hardest working people  I have ever met bar none. The remainder are bullshit lazy fuckwads we find in every race known to MAN.

Pendulum swing. I pray to GOD that these ball sucking floating turds that will never flush be slapped sideways with reality even if it bitchslaps my own so that I can regain a sense of understanding of the struggle it takes to support life on this planet without robbing one to pay off and subsidize another.

Yes I am buzzed, and yes I'm inscenced, and i'm sure 20% of my words are slurred... but fuck it. the time is now.

Won't you take me to... funky town?

HRH of Aquitaine's picture
HRH of Aquitaine (not verified) quartshort Jul 9, 2016 4:33 AM

+1 for using the expletive, "fuckwads." One of my favs!

ghengis86's picture

WTF....I had a bunch of kids and plenty of money and STILL only shopped for necessities. Maybe that's why I had plenty of money? Only bought what I absolutely needed; shopped at Goodwill/Salvation Army/garage sales/craigslist. Kids clothes are a necessity and a ripoff if bought new; overprice logo'd corporate bullshit Mickey Mouse crap made in China that kids grow out of in a month or two. But at a garage sale, true price discovery and value is found and you can get 10 t-shirts for a $1 or $2.

Hell, I hate shopping for a variety of reasons. I'd rather find it online. Or go to the local hardware store and browse the tools. That may be my one area where I'll ship; for a good tool I can use to build or fix something.

If everyone only shopped for what they needed, instead of what corporate America tells them they want, maybe a few more people would have more than $400 in their savings account.

de3de8's picture

Like so many of the issues our country has, responsible citizens dont add to the problem, with little deterrent to those who are not responsible. In fact irresponsible behavior is in many cases promoted, maybe not by intent, but promoted none the less.

Perimetr's picture

Anyone commenting here try working 3 jobs that earn less than a total of $30k a year and support a family???

THAT's what is disturbing and sad.  

Welcome to the 3rd world, Amerika.

SixIsNinE's picture

according to the GrapH, we're still 1/3 less poverty rate than 60 years ago ....

Responsibility when one procreates ... consciousness....

has been stunted and perverted by the policies put into place by the DEA - the druggies who think that having alcohol as the most important drug available to the masses is the right way to go, are ultimately responsible.

The culture of corruption within the DEA is so incredibly systemic that a miracle is called for to change things.

Luckily, the Great Holy GodHead World Spirit has indeed answered the call and delivered said miracle.

Listen Up Zeros,

it's either reform the DEA or watch that screw under the thumb of the GollomSacks suck the lifeblood out of your heart and your mothers heart and your daughters heart and your brothers heart and your cousins heart and your sons heart .... and of course all your grandmas and grandpas hearts too ....

pussies all around, the once mighty ZeroFightClub has been rendered fairly mute and weak ....

GW ... Banzai7 ... CogDis ... HH ....

all have failed the call to organize ... Tylers..... failed ....

wait another day .... eat some more fiatskis ...

watch another Bagdad Bomber strike ...

eat some more fiatskis....

watch some more white folks get murdered by the cops ....

watch some more black folks murder some cops ....

eat some more fiatskis .....




Allen_H's picture

One cannot rely on these graphs, they are always adjusted, it is much worse than this, I feel real bad when seeing people struggling to get by, perhaps because my life has also been a non-stop struggle, if you want to see the unloved, forgotten and struggling, just walk around a city and open your eyes. It grows worse by the week.

The system cannot carry on like this, the majority being told to follow the law while the authority openly breaks it. The system has to be destroyed, all the rich oligarchical fucks need to be hanged, and people have to put all hatreds and anxiety aside and look out for each other. Their splitting up of us makes us weaker, we need to stand together. those in the services like Doctors,nurses, e.t.c need to be told that they have two choices, either help people as your oaths stated, or face the rope. not because he has to make his next fucking payment on his Ferrari.

quartshort's picture

EAT A DICK. I worked 3 part time jobs and was taking 15-22 credits at a 300-400 level for 3 years. Then I worked at Home Depot  on the loading dock humping rail road ties, concrete, hot tubs, tile, mixers, drywall and every other item until I scored a job with benefits. SUCK IT UP BITCH.

magicdragon's picture

"Anyone commenting here try working 3 jobs that earn less than a total of $30k a year and support a family???

THAT's what is disturbing and sad."

I dunno, what seems disturbing and sad to me is that you're working 3 jobs and still earning less than $30K/yr total - and yet think it's ok to push out a few kids and start a family on that? 

How about trying to save some of that money by not pushing out kids early, and instead trying to educate yourself, get experience, try for better employment, etc, before starting to push out little screaming money sinks, and then having to rely on handouts from the govt (ie, money stolen from others) to be able to support them?

Kprime's picture

ain't u the queen of Sheba.  try not to break your arm patting yourself on the back.

LC103's picture

No raise in 5 to 7 years.



Normalcy Bias's picture

I work with a Black single mother who makes over twice the minimum wage, eats at restaurants EVERY work day for lunch (instead of bringing her own food to save money), drinks 1-2 bottles of $2-3 kombucha per day, and is pissed because she was denied for food stamp assistance because she makes too much money.  She's angry because she cannot afford "all of that good food and stuff."

This widespread entitlement mentality is going to suffer a hard, violent death.

crossroaddemon's picture

No politicians at all would be better.

Colonel Klink's picture

Another 3 way suck off by the same person.

Katos's picture

Oh yeah! The Federal Reserve market accelerator? The Fed gave 0% interest loans to giant corporations so they could buy back their own stock and the CEO'S  could reap massive bonuses for performance. Banks used their free money to rig markets around the world and completely destroyed any savings Americans might have had if not for the Feds intervention. The slow suffocating death of America is a boom for the elites who have sold us down the river. So by all means, let the mindless steeple elect Hillary and allow her and her cronies to finish the job. Put us out of our fucking misery!

The Merovingian's picture

And believe me, Hitlary will finish the job.

NidStyles's picture

That whole "hitlery" bs is getting old. Hitler put bankers in concentration camps. Hillary works for those bankers...

Kina's picture

Hitler had standards and a vision for his country and Europe, at any cost.

There would be winners under his plans. Though the cost of it all, beyond pure evil.


Clinton has standard, goal and a vision for herself only and no other, at any cost, any cost she can get away with.

If this were 1940s Germany Clinton would be out there doing her fare share of mass murder for personal profit.

If anything she does benefits the people it is only as a side effect of some other more central goal.

WhackoWarner's picture

USA is dead and dying.

Read the comments.  This is beyond sad.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

<<  A POTUS can "Make 'Merica Great Again"

<<   A POTUS can Not "Make 'Merica Great Again"


Which do you believe is possible in the REAL world?

If unsure, and need some "Forward looking guidance", please refer to the history books about a country or empire in decline making a "comeback".

Resurgence Media Network's picture

Yet, drive by the malls and they packed full house in the lots... It's all these idiots know: CONSUME, CONSUME, CONSUME!!!


"Real Talk... for Real Men"

The Old Man's picture

Their real problem is "Credit, credit, credit!". Then Consume, consume, consume. Considering the affairs of the economy, maybe they're right. Take the money and run!


The Old Man

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

The other day I was out,  and saw tons of signs everywhere that said:

CONSUME.  OBEY.  Work 8 hour.  Sleep 8 hours.  Enjoy 8 hours.  NO INDEPENDENT THOUGHT.

And, oh boy, did many of them looked downright scary.

PGR88's picture



The Dead Kennedys were too drunk to fuck.

Seek_Truth's picture

Wow- 3 spammers in a row- 1st 3 comments!

People are at malls, but few buy anything- they're "window shopping."

The end of large retailers can't come soon enough.

Consumerism is a disease.

Bay Area Guy's picture

I agree with your point about people at the malls.  By and large, they're window shopping.  The only malls that seem to do a good business are the outlet malls, and the majority of the sales, at least at the ones around the Bay Area, seem to be mainland Chinese stocking up on Michael Kors, Coach and Kate Spade.

But the slop factories in the food courts usually seem to be doing a good business.

greenskeeper carl's picture

We go take the kids to the mall sometimes on days we don't feel like going to the beach due to heat/humidity. There is a large play area for them to run around for a little while. Last time I was there, I bought tea and lemonade from the chick fil a in the food court. If I want to, I can buy stuff, I'm lucky I suppose, I just typically choose not to. There were plenty of people there, the play area was full of kids.

While I certainly agree that people not buying useless shit with money they don't have isnt bad, unfortunately they aren't making a conscious decision to not waste money on mindless consumerism, they just don't have the money.