A key sign of financial health is savings; if one does not have a decent amount of money tucked away for a rainy day, it is a sign that all is not well. Americans have a very hard time sticking to a budget and saving, compared to their Asian counterparts.
In China, multinational manufacturers are confronting a first-in-a-generation structural slowdown. Vigilance is in order. Panic is not. The bottom will not fall out of the market but some sectors may enter a state of suspended animation.
Did pessimism about the future influence people to abandon the hope of saving for retirement, or did a lack of savings lead to the pessimism? One clue may be in the fact that people over 55 are even more gloomy about the future of the economy than the general population.
Since debt and savings are opposites, you wouldn't expect them to move in the same direction at the same time. However, recent statistics indicate that as America's debt has shrunk, so too have America's savings rates.