What is the minimum amount that the Brocks should have in an emergency fund?

Pam Jenkins recently married Josh Brock. Pam continues to work as a sales representative for a clothing manufacturer, and her monthly income has averaged $2,840 a month over the past year. Josh is employed as a computer programmer and earns $3,000 a month. Their combined monthly income allows them to live comfortably. Yet they have been unable to save any money for emergencies.

According to Josh, “It’s hard to believe, but we don’t even have a savings account because we spend almost everything we make.” Every month, they deposit each of their paychecks in separate checking accounts. Josh pays the rent and makes the car payment. Pam buys the groceries and pays the utilities. They use the money left over to purchase new clothes and the other “necessities” for enjoying life.

In an effort to make wise use of credit, the Brocks have examined various sources that could serve their current and future financial needs. In the assessment process, they compared the APR along with various fees and potential charges.

Josh and Pam are also learning about various actions that might be useful if they encounter credit troubles. Their discussions with friends and money management advisers provided expanded knowledge of credit counseling and bankruptcy alternatives.

Life Situation

Recently Married
Pam, 26
Josh, 28
Renting an Apartment

Financial Data

Monthly income $5,840/ Living expenses $3,900/ Assets $13,500/ Liabilities $4,800/ Emergency fund $1,000

Q1. What is the minimum amount that the Brocks should have in an emergency fund? What actions might be taken to increase the amount in this fund?

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