Fewer Americans are using their tax refunds to pay down debt this year, according to a new survey from Bankrate.com.
In 2015, 34 percent said they would reduce their debt load, compared to just 28 percent planning to do so this year.
Meanwhile, those who indicate they’ll take their tax refund and splurge on such things as a vacation or shopping spree doubled this year, from 3 percent to 6 percent — although this still represents a very small portion of taxpayers.
Higher income taxpayers lead the way in planning to save or invest their refunds. Of the survey respondents with income of $75,000 or more are in this category, 42 percent said their would save or invest.
However, the least inclined to save their refunds this year are filers making between $50,000 and $74,999. Only 19 percent of this income group will save or invest the money they get back from the IRS. Instead, 35 percent of these filers said they will pay down debt.
Four out of 10 millennial, and about half of retirees, also plan to save or invest most of their tax refunds.
Bankrate.com also asked if they would be willing to wait longer for tax refunds if the delay would help the Internal Revenue Services examine more returns and help catch more cases of tax-related identity theft. A surprising 22 percent of those who participated in the poll conducted last month said they would be willing to wait from 1 to 2 months. Another 13 percent are more patient, saying they would wait even longer.