Credit: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

More than half of Black households are facing financial crisis as they contend with inflation rates that are at their highest in 40 years. According to a new poll from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Black, Latino and Native American are hardest hit by the tough economy in which high gas prices and steadily increasing grocery store costs are stretching American’s wallets.

Some 58 percent of African Americans, 69% of Native Americans, and 56% of Latinos report rising costs have left them struggling with serious financial problems. Alternately, only 44% of white households and 36% of Asians say they deal with  serious financial troubles.

Some 58 percent of African Americans, 69 percent of Native Americans, and 56 percent of Latinos report rising costs have left them struggling with serious financial problems. Alternately, only 44% of white households and 36% of Asians say they deal with  serious financial troubles.

The poll also found that inflation is compounding current financial stresses, including high healthcare costs and the lack of affordable housing, issues that overwhelmingly affect Black populations.

Of those surveyed, 24% of Black households compared to just 18% of white households, and 10% of Asian households say they have put off seeking health care for serious illnesses in the past year.

The news comes as the U.S. has seen two consecutive quarters of a shrinking gross domestic product, which is the definition of a technical recession.

Fifty eight percent of Black adults who responded to the poll say they don’t have one month of expenses saved up in an emergency account. Just 20% percent of Asians and 38% of white people say they can’t cover one month of typical expenses with their savings on hand. Financial advisors often suggest maintaining a savings of at least three months living expenses. 

On Sunday, Vice President Kamala Harris cast the tiebreaker vote to pass the Inflation Reduction Act in the U.S. Senate. The ambitious plan to fight climate change, lower prescription drug prices via Medicare, reduce the U.S. deficit, and earn new revenue through tax overhauls is the president’s plan that he says, “tackles inflation by lowering the deficit and lowering costs for regular families.”

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