Rising childcare costs starting to bite

Childcare payments have risen over 30% since 2019, pressuring families to spend less and draw on savings more across all incomes.

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Anna Zhou

Octobber 2023

Key takeaways

  • Rising childcare costs add to the list of headwinds facing consumers. According to Bank of America internal data, the average childcare payment per household has risen over 30% since 2019 with middle- and upper-income families (annual income of $100k-$250k) seeing the biggest increase.
  • This might be driving some parents out of the workforce in order to look after their children. Specifically, among families that pay for childcare, there are fewer dual income households in 2023 than in 2019. Regionally, consumers in large cities such as San Francisco and Seattle are paying the most for childcare.
  • Our data finds families with childcare payments have been spending at a slower pace than the rest of the population since May. They are also dipping into savings at a faster rate. But the good news is that across income groups, even households that pay for childcare have considerable excess savings relative to 2019 levels, which could continue to provide a financial buffer.

Read our full analysis for a more in-depth look at these trends.