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Tech that breaks bad habits

Digit Saves Money For You So You Don’t Have To Think About It

Photo of Diana Vieira Fernandes
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"Over the years we’ve seen the emergence of a number of personal finance apps, most of which have been designed to help users create budgets, better understand their finances, and make positive decisions with their money.

Those apps were great for the small percentage of users who were already ultra-interested in examining the minutiae of where their money was going… But for those of us who don’t want to deal with the cognitive overhead and depression that comes with knowing you’re spending more than you should on things you don’t need, they weren’t very helpful." 

With $2.5M In Seed Funding, Digit Saves Money For You So You Don’t Have To Think About It, TechCrunch

"According to Federal Reserve data, about half of Americans have not saved a single dime for retirement. And in a recent survey, only 68 percent of Americans said they’re spending less money than they make. That means nearly one third of the country’s working population isn’t saving any money at all. 

(...)

Digit is like a digital piggybank. It connects to a user’s checking account, analyzes the user’s spending habits and income history, and uses an algorithm to automatically set aside small amounts of money—usually between $1 and $150—at times when the user is least likely to miss it.

“The system looks at your balance that day and asks: ‘Is this a high balance for this person? Does this person have upcoming bills? Do they have any paychecks over the next seven days?"

This digital piggy bank could finally get you to start saving, Wired


Digit website: https://digit.co/



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Photo of Alicia Diamond

Hi Diana, interesting share! My husband and I use Acorn (which rounds up transactions to whole dollars and invests the difference). I agree that these products encourage savings, but they don't address the underlying problem: that people would prefer to not think/worry/act about personal finance. These products also assume that folks have money left over to save, which is typically achieve through budgeting. Have you used Digit? Does it help you to change your behavior? Thanks for sharing!

Photo of Diana Vieira Fernandes

Hi Alicia,

The great thing is the algorithm that assumes our behaviors (by tracking our spending habits, so we don´t have to do it ourselves) of not "wanting to think/worry", but the trigger to download and connect the app to our bank account could be explored :) I have an excel spreadsheet (old fashioned....) namely to know tax deductions (indirect way to save some money...). There is lots of research on how data can change our behaviors. For me was the simple payroll paper where it had the gross and net (and knowing how much I don´t even "see".. ) I hated that feeling on the end of the fiscal year and couldn’t deduct lot things, because didn´t ask for the invoices... Doing the automation of this kind of things would be great (or avoid the dally concern on those...).

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