Pressure to overspend is epidemic during the holidays, study finds

SALT LAKE CITY — Three surveys of thousands of Americans offer a window into a growing holiday trend: Americans adults feel pressure to overspend.

Bankrate.com asked Americans about different kinds of spending and discovered that 51 percent of adults feel the most pressure to overspend on gifts, with fewer feeling pressure to overspend on social occasions and travel.

The most pressure is on parents, with 71 percent feeling the pressure to spend more than they can afford on gifts.

Gary Gygi, with Gygi Capital Management, points to a study from CreditCards.com. They looked at every state and ranked Utah 33rd when it comes to responsible money management.

“A comment I hear quite often is: 'I love my family so much,'" Gygi said, which causes parents to justify overspending.

People who already have credit card debt are most likely to take on more. 61 percent of people who already carry a balance on their card say they are willing to add more debt for holiday spending. Just 30 percent of people who are debt-free are willing to do the same.

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