It's pretty safe to say that money makes the world go round, but not everyone in anime realizes the power or responsibility that comes with it. These characters are either failing to be realistic about their lives, are just that incompetent, or on some occasions change their financial priorities. Sometimes it can be a mix of the three.
To be fair to each of these characters, life isn't always kind to them, and many have their own emotional blocks that are preventing them from achieving greatness. No matter the situation, however, their bad habits of spending have led them down the worst paths, which has in some cases, prevented them from achieving their dreams, or worse, threatened their very lives.
10 Osomatsu-San: Iyami's Con Artist Gigs Bring Him No Closer To His Goals
Financial struggle is a running theme in the anime Osomatsu-San, with one of the biggest examples of a deadbeat being the character Iyami. Iyami lives in poverty but acts arrogantly and with little care for others. With his obsession with France, he pretends like he's from the country even though there's nothing authentically French about him, and his dream is, as he puts it, to "return to France."
In order to make enough money to survive and travel to his dream country, Iyami makes up scheme after scheme, which never works out for him in the end. As rotten as he is, he does have a nice side, so perhaps if he tried being a little nicer he could be hired for a decent job and start saving up for his dream.
9 Space Dandy: Dandy Spends Too Much Money Visiting His Favorite Restaurant
Everyone has a pastime that costs money, but the protagonist from Space Dandy spends too much visiting his favorite restaurant chain "Boo-Bies" that he neglects other more important responsibilities. Dandy's goal is to visit every restaurant in the chain and on day own all of them, but he fails to see that he won't be able to own anything if he squanders the little money that he has.
In his career as an alien hunter, he's not doing so well, making very little money to keep himself and his crew afloat. His frivolous way of spending money at "Boo-Bies" doesn't help since he forgets to take care of his crew and even cover the cost of ship repairs.
8 Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds: Jack Is Only Rich When It Comes To Dueling
The "King of Cards" Jack Atlas may be a pro when it comes to dueling, but aside from that, he doesn't have many skills. He learns over time to be less arrogant and more personable, but that doesn't help him when he begins to struggle to make ends meet.
With a very bold personality, Jack prefers more expensive items, even going as far as ordering 3,000 yen ($30) cups of coffee, building up a terrible amount of debt since he can't pay for said coffee among other things. Because of his terrible social skills, he can never hold a job for long, spiraling him deeper into poverty.
7 Noragami: Yato Dreams Of Luxury, But Doesn't Spend Wisely
Noragami's plot is centered around the God Yato's dream to become the most worshipped God in Japan, but in order to do that, he needs money and to spread his name around. Yato offers his services doing odd jobs for only the cost of five yen (roughly .50 cents), which is what people typically pay at a shrine.
With a big heart, he wants to help people, and at the same time wants an exotic shrine. The money he makes doing odd jobs goes towards the building of his dream shrine, but he typically spends much of it on alcohol and gambling, and on occasion for his friends.
6 Konosuba: Aqua's Alcohol Addiction Is More Than Just Bad For Her Health
Whenever the gang in Konosuba land a high-paying gig, it's a hope that they won't have to struggle to afford basic necessities for a while. Sadly, that hope is never realized as their useless Goddess member Aqua is always thirsty for some expensive liquor.
It's the same story every time, the group makes money, Aqua somehow grabs hold of said money and then proceeds to spend it to go binge drinking. They might want to either find a failsafe way to keep their earnings away from Aqua or find an AA group that she can join.
5 Gintama: Gintoki's Money Problems Aren't Helped By His Love Of Pachinko
Gintoki struggles to make ends meet throughout Gintama, but that's not because the government is always chasing the illegal Samurai down, it's because he's too lazy to earn enough money and spends what little he has to gamble at pachinko parlors.
Unable to make easy money or save what money he makes, Gintoki is constantly broke and consequently on the run from his landlady. If he was more motivated in life either to work harder or be smarter with his wallet, or both, then life could be that much easier for him.
4 Pokémon: Team Rocket Dream's Of Grandeur Are A Part Of Why They're So Broke
Granted, it can be hard to make money when coming from nothing, which is what Jessie and Meowth had to go through, but at some point, everyone has to find that job that keeps them afloat. James chose to leave his rich family to gain independence, but neither he nor Jessie or Meowth have figured out how adulthood works.
Since their job of stealing Pokémon is based on commission, they should realize that the reason why they never have enough money is that they just aren't good at their job. They hold onto the dream of capturing Pikachu or some legendary Pokémon to wow their boss, but after a while, they have to realize it's a bit delusional. On top of that, they all each have a bad habit of spending the little money that they make, further sinking them into poverty.
3 One Piece: While Luffy Stuffs His Face, The Crew Empties Their Wallets
Being an adventurer on the high seas surely takes a lot of energy, and therefore a lot of food to keep the body going, but One Piece's protagonist Luffy takes his hunger to the next level, costing him and his crew a small fortune.
Luffy can eat an entire banquet of food, and even though his body can stretch enough to fit all that in his mouth and stomach, it puts a lot of pressure on the crew's budget. With how much he spends on food alone, it's amazing they can afford to go on any adventures at all.
2 Kaiji - Ultimate Survivor: Kaiji's Bad Money Habits Lead Him To An Underground World
Kaiji Itou learns the hard way that drinking and being a delinquent doesn't pay the rent. After being betrayed by someone he thought he could trust, he incurs a massive amount of debt, forcing him to join the underground world of gambling.
By the time he realizes the rug has been swept under his feet, Kaiji is left with few options and jumps into this dangerous organization of deadly gamblers. With a bit of luck, he could make it out richer than ever before, but if he fails to make the right bets, it'll be the last thing he does.
1 Naruto: Tsunade Was On The Run Because Of Her Gambling
When Tsunade's name was first mentioned in Naruto, she was revered as one of the Three Legendary Sannin, the right person to become Hokage, and one of the most talented medical ninja. With all these amazing traits, even Naruto was expecting an incredible, put-together adult, but instead was met with a capricious gambling addict who neglected any responsibility. After leaving the village, Tsunade bounced from one gambling joint to the next and wouldn't accept her bad luck as a sign she should stop.
Because she was so in debt, Tsunade was repeatedly chased after by debt collectors, so she'd change her age often to avoid being caught. Even after she became Hokage, her debts weren't resolved and she had to manage that at the same time she was responsible for the village.