Economic and Internet Banking Trends
Below are selected findings from the most recent Strategic Marketing Services (SMS) Omnibus Poll conducted between July 23 and 30. A randomly selected, computer-generated, stratified statewide sample of 400 Maine adults was interviewed. SMS (formerly a division of Guy Gannett Publishing) is the quantitative and qualitative marketing research division of Pan Atlantic Consultants, Maine’s largest independent marketing research and business consulting firm.
• Approximately one in five respondents (21.5 percent) said that they believe that the Maine economy is generally headed in the “right direction.” Six in 10 (60 percent) feel that the state’s economy is generally headed in the “wrong direction,” and 18.5 percent said that they “don’t know.”
• Since the February 2005 SMS Omnibus, there has been a 13.5 point decrease in the percentage of respondents who feel that the Maine economy is generally headed in the “right direction.”
• Respondents with 2004 gross household incomes of less than $25,000 (21.9 percent) and those with incomes of $65,000 or more (30 percent) were more likely to report that the economy is headed in the “right direction” than were those in the $25,000-$44,999 (15.7 percent) or the $45,000-$64,999 (19 percent) income groups.
Use of Online Banking Services Approximately one-third of all respondents (33.8 percent) said that they conduct some form of online banking. The remaining two-thirds (66.3 percent) said that they do not conduct online banking.
• Respondents age 55 and older, respondents with a high school education or less, and respondents earning less than $25,000 per year were the least likely to say that they conduct online banking.
• Of those who use online banking services, 63.7 percent use this service to conduct transactions online as well as to check account balances. Another 16.3 percent said that they use online banking only to conduct transactions, 17.8 percent said that they use online banking only to check account balances and 2.2 percent said that they “don’t know.”
• Four in five of those who conduct banking online, or 27 percent of the total population, report that they use this service to execute transactions.
Have you checked your personal credit report in the past three years?
• Four in ten respondents (40 percent) said that they have checked their personal credit report at some point in the past three years, 59 percent said that they have not, and 1 percent said that they “don’t know.”
• Respondents in the 35-54 year age group (48.6 percent) were more likely to have checked their credit report than were those aged 18-34 (34.5 percent) or those aged 55 or older (31.8 percent). Those respondents who completed a college education (50 percent) were more likely to have che cked their credit report than those with “some college” (35.8 percent) or those with a “high school education or less” (35.2 percent). Respondents earning less than $25,000 per year were less likely than those earning more money to have checked their credit report.
Confidence in Accuracy of Credit Reports
• Approximately six in 10 respondents (60.3 percent) said that they are either “very confident” (29.5 percent) or “somewhat confident” (30.8 percent) that the credit reports kept by the three major national credit reporting companies are free of errors. A total of 18 percent said that they are either “not very confident” (14.8 percent) or “not at all confident” (3.3 percent) of the accuracy of these reports. Another 12.5 percent of respondents said that they are “neutral” on the subject, and 9.3 percent said that they “don’t know.”.
• Respondents age 18-34, respondents with a college degree or more, and respondents with incomes of $45,000 or more were more likely to be “very confident” or “somewhat confident” than were those who are older, have less education or earn lower incomes.