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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

For many in the generation of young adults who came of age during the financial crisis, owning big-ticket items like houses and cars is no longer seen as wise — or necessary.

The bottom line: Formative financial anxieties were cemented just as smartphones arrived, enabling the rise of "sharing" and "gig economy" services like Uber.

Compared to Baby Boomers at the same age, millennials are:

  • More likely to live with their parents.
  • Less likely to be homeowners.
  • More than twice as likely to be unmarried.
  • Less likely to have children.

They also have more than three times as much debt, especially from college loans.

"Millennials want to hold on to the money they have" because they saw their parents lose their jobs and homes, says Morley Winograd, who has written three books about the Great Recession generation.

Apple opened its iPhone App Store just two months before Lehman Brothers went bust, creating the conditions for mobile services that reduced the need to own high-priced items like cars.

  • Even Airbnb was partially a byproduct of these dueling factors, with two of its co-founders hatching the idea after housing travelers to help pay their rent in late 2007, which is still a common reason hosts use the service, according to global policy chief Chris Lehane, who adds: "That time period is very much in the DNA of Airbnb."

Go deeper: Being 30, then and now

Go deeper

Biden's Day 1 challenges: Systemic racism

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Kirsty O'Connor (PA Images)/Getty Images

Advocates are pushing President-elect Biden to tackle systemic racism with a Day 1 agenda that includes ending the detention of migrant children and expanding DACA, announcing a Justice Department investigation of rogue police departments and returning some public lands to Indigenous tribes.

Why it matters: Biden has said the fight against systemic racism will be one of the top goals of his presidency — but the expectations may be so high that he won't be able to meet them.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
2 hours ago - Health

Most Americans are still vulnerable to the coronavirus

Adapted from Bajema, et al., 2020, "Estimated SARS-CoV-2 Seroprevalence in the US as of September 2020"; Cartogram: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

As of September, the vast majority of Americans did not have coronavirus antibodies, according to a new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Why it matters: As the coronavirus spreads rapidly throughout most of the country, most people remain vulnerable to it.

Trump set to appear at Pennsylvania GOP hearing on voter fraud claims

President Trumpat the White House on Tuesday. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump is due to join his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Wednesday at a Republican-led state Senate Majority Policy Committee hearing to discuss alleged election irregularities.

Why it matters: This would be his first trip outside of the DMV since Election Day and comes shortly after GSA ascertained the results, formally signing off on a transition to President-elect Biden.