Millennials — the generation born between 1981 and 1996 — are keenly observed for their effects on American life. Having a couple of years ago overtaken baby boomers (born 1946 to 1954) as the largest generation, the millennials now number around 80 million and are responsible for 21% of all consumer discretionary spending in the U.S.
Millennials have a trillion dollars in purchasing power and for the most part are better educated than previous generations. But they have had the unfortunate timing of coming of age in the shadow of the Great Recession (2007-2009), which mightily hit their job prospects and earning potential. And now the COVID-19 pandemic has led to high unemployment among their ranks. Little wonder that so many of them are struggling financially. In a recent check on their financial well-being, WalletHub, the personal finance website, ranked the states (plus the District of Columbia) on dozens of metrics including affordability, education and health, quality of life, economic health and civic engagement for millennials.
In overall rankings of the best states for millennials, New Jersey landed in meh territory, 28th place overall. The state’s most striking feature was for having the highest share of millennials living with their parents; the WalletHub analysis put that at 45.99%; North Dakota reportedly had the lowest share still bunking with the folks (14.13%). Another notable measure: The study ranked New Jersey as the state with the lowest percentage of millennials with depression. Hmmm, connect the dots to the high percentage living with the parents? (Answers on a postcard, please, moms and dads.)