Tax trends: What people are doing with their tax returns and stimulus checks

If Amarillo consumers are spending or saving the money.
Updated: Jun. 15, 2021 at 9:49 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Today is the last day to file your taxes, and Amarillo banks have been seeing trends throughout the pandemic on how people have been using their tax returns, stimulus checks and soon child tax credit payments.

There have been three rounds of stimulus checks and Amarillo National Bank says each time consumers spent and saved the money differently.

The bank says during the first round of stimulus checks, 75 percent of people spent the money.

Then on the second and third round of stimulus checks, about half used it to pay off debt rather than spending it.

“Typically, people will fix their balance sheets. They’ll want to make sure that their debt is at a comfortable level, and once that happens then perhaps, they’ll being to spend a bit more... Then they’ll tend to want to lever up. So, we’re starting to see that. Peoples balance sheets are getting better and they’re starting to borrow more and more because they feel like their jobs are a little more secure, and again that’s broad generalization. There’s lots of folks out there who are still struggling,” said Matt Ramsey, senior vice president and senior investment officer at Amarillo National Bank.

Interest rates are low so people with businesses are making moves as the economy comes back and consumers now have more opportunities to make bigger purchases.

“Interest rates are very low, so folks who borrow money either for investment, if you’re a corporation or a business and you want to increase the supply that you’re able to fill with the demand that’s given and the other way would be if you’re a consumer. So, if you’re a consumer, these low interest rates help you with borrowing to buy a boat, or a home or a vehicle or something like that,” said Ramsey.

Happy State Bank tells NewsChannel 10 it saw an increase in deposits during the pandemic. Amarillo National Bank is also seeing the same thing.

“We’ve seen a nice growth in our deposits. Again, a lot of the tax policies have resulted in folks getting money that they’ve saved, we’ve been the recipient of that. As well as low interest rates, we’ve been the recipient of that as well and on the lending side. So, we’re seeing a healthy balance sheet,” said Ramsey.

Ramsey says the tax deadline being pushed back has not affected the way people are spending and saving money.

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