Baby Boomer Spending Patterns

Baby Boomer Spending Patterns

Move Over Millennials: Outlook on Baby Boomer Spending Patterns

John Carroll

John Carroll

John Carroll is a senior writer and editor at TSYS who follows and writes about the payments industry. He has more than 20 years of experience writing and editing content for various news, marketing and technical channels.

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While industry reports continue to hone in on millennials, the behavioral and spending trends of Gen X and baby boomers should not be ignored. In fact, there are more consumers over the age of 60 than there were 10 years ago with about 11 million more people turning 60 plus by 2020. To dive deeper into the spending trends of boomers, we sat down with Wayne Best, chief economist for Visa.

The behavioral shift of boomers (aged 60 and older) is impacting their spending habits according to Visa’s recent projections. For example, boomers are retiring later than previous generations and have taken on more debt. Over the last 10 to 15 years, debt has increased about 60 percent between 2003 through 2015 for consumers aged 50 to 80 years old.

Despite the growth in debt, boomers aren't afraid to spend their hard-earned money. But instead of grabbing their checkbooks and cash, boomers are turning to other forms of payments and channels.

Contrary to assumptions, boomers have smartphones, computers and other devices. And despite not being digital natives, they are actually using these devices to make purchases online for a wide variety of goods. Some of the strongest categories for boomers are grocery, home goods and services ranging from healthcare and insurance to taxis and fast food.

Tune in to the full interview for Visa's latest projects and to learn more about how the behavioral shifts of boomers are impacting the spending patterns.



Wayne Best

As Chief Economist for Visa Inc., Wayne Best keeps close watch on emerging opportunities in the trillion-dollar payments industry. An active participant in the World Economic Forum’s Future of Consumption community, he identifies economic trends shaping the future. His unique presentations explain the impact of these trends to company and client executives as well as government leaders around the globe.

Frequently quoted in the trade and business media, Best brings economic theory and analysis to life with compelling stories and up-to-the-minute data from the largest payment provider in the industry. Because he stays close to the underlying dynamics of the business, his insights provide a clear perspective on the consumer's ability to spend, save and pay down debt. His passion for business and engineer's logic turn mathematical models and technical jargon into business intelligence that enables future oriented business decisions.

Before joining Visa in 1990, Best worked as a consultant performing cost benefit analyses for the power industry. In addition to his MBA, Best holds a degree in nuclear engineering and has participated in the Stanford University and Kellogg School of Management executive programs.

The statements and opinions of the writer do not necessarily reflect those of TSYS.

Other Articles by John

John Carroll

John Carroll is a writer and editor at TSYS who follows and writes about the payments industry. He has more than 20 years of experience writing and editing content for various news, marketing and technical channels. His articles have published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, the Daily Report and Georgia Trend.

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