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Save USA

April 15 is just around the corner, and millions across the country are scrambling to get their taxes paid.

But tax season may also offer a unique opportunity for some low-income Americans. “Save USA” is a program created by New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg and funded by federal, state and private dollars. The idea? To encourage low-income New Yorkers to put their tax refunds in a savings account instead of spending the extra money right away.

For every dollar program participants save — up to $1,000 — they receive an extra 50 cents. If the money is kept in a savings account for a full year, participants can receive as much as $500.

Above, Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Linda Gibbs explains how the low-cost program aims to break the cycle of poverty by encouraging better savings habits.

Visit the Save USA website.


Savings and loans

William Brangham reports on companies that are helping their workers make it through tough times with income advance loans. Many workers keep the automatic pay deduction after the loan is paid off and start the habit of saving.

Deputy Mayor Linda Gibbs on Family Rewards

Anchor Ray Suarez interviews Linda Gibbs, Deputy Mayor of New York, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg is one of the most high-profile backers of the “Family Rewards” program. Gibbs talks about how changing behavior may help to lift young people out of poverty.

American Voices: Dan Ariely

Dan Ariely, professor of psychology and behavioral economics at Duke University, talks about why saving money is so difficult for many people and how simple changes in policy can make it easier to do.

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