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ZYNC from American Express® Launches "The Quarterlife Project," Empowering 20-Somethings to Take Control of Their FinancesNew Survey Reveals Money is Top Concern for Gen Y with Majority Still Financially Dependent on Parents and Family Members

American Express partners with Gen Y Expert and Life Coach, Christine Hassler, to Help 20-Somethings Navigate the "Quarterlife" Years
NEW YORK,  January 13, 2011 -- 

ZYNC from American Express today launches "The Quarterlife Project" to gauge attitudes and perceptions of 20-somethings about money, while providing resources to help them take control of their finances, including access to a new "ZYNC® QuarterLife Coach" – Gen Y expert, life coach and author, Christine Hassler.

The project kicks-off with the release of new survey findings indicating making money is the top concern for people in their twenties (96%), with nearly eight in ten (79%) saying they feel overwhelmed by their current financial situation. In addition, more than half (57%) of those surveyed indicated they are still financially dependent on their parents and other family members to help pay bills.

The Quarterlife Survey was commissioned by ZYNC from American Express in collaboration with Hassler, and full survey results are available at facebook.com/zync. The research sample included 1,253 people from the general U.S. population age 20 to 49.

Gen Y Faces a Resource Gap
The vast majority (86%) of people in their twenties describe their current financial situation as "stressful". And few feel that there are financial resources and tools that are helpful to their demographic. According to the survey, more than half (54%) of Gen Y believe that most financial services are geared toward older age groups. Two-thirds say they wish they had more tools and resources to increase their understanding and knowledge about financial issues (67%) and money management (66%).

"As people in their twenties – or 'Quarterlifers' – make the transition into successful, self-reliant adulthood, many are looking for the tools and insights to help guide them along the way, especially when it comes to managing their finances," said Mary Hines, vice president, ZYNC Product Management for American Express. "That's why we partnered with Christine Hassler and other experts to create tips and online resources to help Gen Y. We want to help them truly enjoy this time of their lives and create a solid financial foundation for the future."

The Quarterlife Project Addresses Needs of a New Generation
Given the unique challenges and opportunities facing 20-somethings, American Express has recently launched several additional products and resources to help financially empower Quarterlifers:

  • ZYNC Virtual Quarterlife Coach: As part of the Quarterlife Project, ZYNC from American Express is offering access for twenty-somethings to life coach and Gen Y expert Christine Hassler until March. Hassler has partnered with American Express to provide valuable multi-media content to help 20-somethings get fiscally fit, including a list of the top ten tips to help 20-somethings get their financial house in order. The tips can be accessed at facebook.com/zync. Twenty-somethings can also e-mail Hassler their questions about quarterlife quandaries at zynclifecoach@aexp.com, and she will address some of the most commonly asked ones via bi-weekly video posts on the ZYNC Facebook page.
     
  • ZYNC from American Express: ZYNC from American Express is the company's newest Charge Card and is designed for and with a new generation of Cardmembers. The ZYNC Card brings together the financial control of the pay-in-full Charge Card with the added flexibility to select bundles of rewards and benefits called "Packs" that are tailored to specific lifestyle interests and spending habits in categories such as music, fashion, food, travel and more. The Card is designed to help consumers wisely manage their money while empowering them to further pursue their interests and passions. For more information, please visit zynccard.com.
     
  • ZYNC Advisory Panel: To help develop the ZYNC Card, American Express partnered with a group of 16 influential bloggers representing key areas of interest including art, culture, fashion, food, personal finance and giving back to form an Advisory Panel. Now, the bloggers – known as the ZAP -- will be providing peer-to-peer insights and advice about how Gen Y'ers can make the most of their passions, while still staying financially on track. Articles from the ZAP will be posted regularly on the ZAP tab of the ZYNC Facebook page.
     
  • Currency(SM) a Service of American Express: This innovative, new online service available at getcurrency.com provides fun, fresh advice on managing personal finances. Created in partnership with Federated Media, Currency offers tips and suggestions on saving and spending, and allows visitors to the site to share their new knowledge on social networks and through a newly launched iPhone app: "Social Currency." Whether updating last year's wardrobe on a dime, or figuring out how to avoid roommate budget tiffs, the Currency service is designed to help a new generation better understand and handle its assets.

About the Survey
The 2010 Quarterlife Survey, conducted by Echo Research and commissioned by American Express, was fielded in September 2010. The survey was conducted online among a random sample of 1,253 people from the general U.S. population age 20 to 49. Interviewing was conducted between September 20 and 24, 2010.

About Christine Hassler
Christine Hassler is a renowned life coach, professional speaker and author specializing in Gen Y and generational issues. She consults with and speaks to organizations and corporations about empowering young professionals and bridging generational gaps in the workplace. As a speaker, Christine delivers keynotes to conferences, colleges and businesses around the U.S. Christine is the author of several books including Twenty-Something, Twenty-Everything and Twenty-Something Manifesto: Quarter Lifers Speak out About Who They Are, What They Want, and How to Get It. Christine graduated cum laude from Northwestern University and has a Masters Degree in Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. She is also a Certified NLP Practitioner. For more information, please visit www.christinehassler.com.

About American Express
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, twitter.com/americanexpress and youtube.com/americanexpress.


Contacts

Brad Minor212.640.2274bradley.r.minor@aexp.com

       
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