First Command Reports: Military Voters Reveal Pocketbook Focus for Primaries

Military benefits and the economy identified by middle-class military
families as the most important issues in choosing who they will support
in the upcoming elections

FORT WORTH, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Active-duty voters are focusing on finances – namely, their military
benefits and the economy – as the top election issues for the 2016
presidential primaries.

The First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that one in five
voters in middle-class military families (commissioned officers and
senior NCOs in pay grades E-6 and above with household incomes of at
least $50,000) identify policies impacting military benefits and jobs
and economic growth as the most important issues in choosing who they
will vote for in the primary elections. Other top issues are:

  • Social Security benefits, which was ranked No. 1 by 9 percent of
    survey respondents
  • Foreign policy (9 percent)
  • Healthcare (7 percent)
  • Climate change (7 percent)
  • Gun control (7 percent)
  • Immigration (7 percent)
  • Education (6 percent)
  • Medicare premium increases (4 percent)

General population voters share many of these same concerns. Civilians
identified jobs and economic growth as their most important election
issue (ranked No. 1 by 31 percent). But policies impacting military
benefits were near the bottom of their interests (ranked No. 1 by only 2
percent).

“Continuing concerns over the larger economy, uncertainty about the
future of Social Security and Medicare and rising healthcare costs are
financial issues of great importance to many Americans this election
year,” said Scott Spiker, CEO of First Command Financial Services, Inc.
“But our men and women in uniform face the added worries of how military
budget cuts, sequestration and defense downsizing will impact their
family finances. Recent changes to military pay and benefits, such as
the newly approved military retirement system, are intensifying ongoing
feelings of financial anxiety. The positions that candidates support
regarding policies on military benefits will clearly influence the votes
that career military families decide to cast in the 2016 primaries.”

Which party’s candidates are military voters most likely to support? The
Index reveals they are relatively equally split (44 percent for
Democrats and 39 percent for Republicans). Similar preferences are
expressed by civilian voters (41 percent for Democrats and 37 percent
for Republicans).

First Command surveyed consumers on their voting intentions as part of
its ongoing research into how sequestration and defense downsizing is
affecting the financial lives of middle-class military families.

About the First Command Financial Behaviors Index®

Compiled by Sentient Decision Science, Inc., the First Command Financial
Behaviors Index® assesses trends among the American public’s
financial behaviors, attitudes and intentions through a monthly survey
of approximately 530 U.S. consumers aged 25 to 70 with annual household
incomes of at least $50,000. Results are reported quarterly. The margin
of error is +/- 4.3 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence. http://www.firstcommand.com/fbi/

About Sentient Decision Science, Inc.

Sentient Decision Science was commissioned by First Command to compile
the Financial Behaviors Index®. SDS is a behavioral science and
consumer psychology consulting firm with special vertical expertise
within the financial services industry. SDS specializes in advanced
research methods and statistical analysis of behavioral and attitudinal
data.

About First Command

First Command Financial Services and its subsidiaries, including First
Command Bank and First Command Financial Planning, assist American
families in their efforts to build wealth, reduce debt and pursue their
lifetime financial goals and dreams—focusing on consumer behavior as the
first and most powerful determinant of results. Through knowledgeable
advice and coaching of the financial behaviors conducive to success,
First Command Financial Advisors have built trustworthy, lasting
relationships with hundreds of thousands of client families since 1958.

First Command Financial Services, Inc., is the parent of First
Command Financial Planning, Inc. (Member
SIPC,
FINRA),
First Command Advisory Services, Inc., First Command Insurance Services,
Inc. and First Command Bank. Financial planning services and investment
products, including securities, are offered by First Command Financial
Planning, Inc. , a broker-dealer. Financial planning and investment
advisory services are offered by First Command Advisory Services, Inc.,

an investment adviser.
Insurance products and services are
offered by First Command Insurance Services, Inc., in all states except
Montana, where as required by law, insurance products and services are
offered by First Command Financial Services, Inc. (a separate Montana
domestic corporation). Banking products and services are offered by
First Command Bank. In certain states, as required by law, First Command
Insurance Services, Inc. does business as a separate domestic
corporation. Securities products are not FDIC insured, have no bank
guarantee and may lose value. A financial plan, by itself, cannot assure
that retirement or other financial goals will be met. First Command
Financial Services, Inc. and its related entities are not affiliated
with, authorized to sell or represent on behalf of or otherwise endorsed
by any federal employee benefits programs referenced, by the U.S.
government, or the U.S. armed forces.

Contacts

First Command Financial Services, Inc.
Mark Leach, 817-569-2419
Media
Relations
msleach@firstcommand.com