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First Command Reports: Black Friday remains popular shopping day for military families

First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals one in three middle-class military families plan to do most of their holiday shopping on the day after Thanksgiving

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FORT WORTH, Texas — Again this holiday season, America's career military families are planning to outpace the rest of the Middle Class in making Black Friday the focus of their frugal shopping strategies.

First Command's annual holiday spending survey reveals that 36 percent of middle-class military families (commissioned officers and senior NCOs in pay grades E-5 and above with household incomes of at least $50,000) plan to do most or all of their holiday shopping on Black Friday. That’s twice the rate reported by the survey’s general population respondents.

This marks the third consecutive year that the Black Friday shopping plans of military families are expected to exceed those of civilian households. In pre-2014 surveys, less than one in five respondents in both military and civilian populations said they planned to do most or all of their holiday shopping on the day after Thanksgiving.

“The intention of service members and their families to seek out Black Friday deals reflects a broader, ongoing commitment to frugal holiday celebrations,” said Scott Spiker, CEO of First Command Financial Services, Inc. “The 2016 holiday shopping season marks the ninth consecutive year that the Index has pointed to leaner spending in military families. Nine out of ten career military families plan to cut back again this year. By making Black Friday the centerpiece of their shopping plans, these families continue to pursue the frugal spending strategies they developed during the economic uncertainty of recent years and maintain year-round control over their finances.”

About First Command Financial Behaviors Index®

Compiled by Sentient Decision Science, Inc., the First Command Financial Behaviors Index® assesses trends among the American public’s financial behaviors, attitudes and intentions through a monthly survey of approximately 530 U.S. consumers aged 25 to 70 with annual household incomes of at least $50,000. Results are reported quarterly. The margin of error is +/- 4.3 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. Financial Behaviors Index

About Sentient Decision Science, Inc.

Sentient Decision Science was commissioned by First Command to compile the Financial Behaviors Index®. SDS is a behavioral science and consumer psychology consulting firm with special vertical expertise within the financial services industry. SDS specializes in advanced research methods and statistical analysis of behavioral and attitudinal data.

About First Command

First Command Financial Services and its subsidiaries, including First Command Bank and First Command Financial Planning, assist American families in their efforts to build wealth, reduce debt and pursue their lifetime financial goals and dreams—focusing on consumer behavior as the first and most powerful determinant of results. Through knowledgeable advice and coaching of the financial behaviors conducive to success, First Command Financial Advisors have built trustworthy, lasting relationships with hundreds of thousands of client families since 1958.


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