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Understanding the Financial Capability of Americans

Using data from the ongoing National Financial Capability Study, these research studies explore different elements of financial capability, including the financial knowledge, resources and habits of Americans.

NEW: What We Leave Behind: Financial Education and Estate Planning

This 2020 award-winning submission by Dr. Richard Stebbins and co-authored by Dr. Kyoung Tae Kim at the University of Alabama used data from the 2018 National Financial Capability Study to examine the association between financial education and basic estate planning. The findings indicated that more and better quality financial education is associated with a greater likelihood of having a will.

 

Financial Anxiety and Stress among U.S. Households: New Evidence from the National Financial Capability Study and Focus Groups

This study from the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC) and the FINRA Foundation found that a large share of U.S adults feel stress and anxiety in relation to their personal finances. Findings from the 2018 National Financial Capability Study were complemented with focus group discussions from late 2020. Financial stress and anxiety were prominent in women, younger adults, those with lower-incomes, and individuals low levels of financial literacy.

 

Bouncing Back? The Financial Resilience of Americans

This research from 2018 shows that Americans typically fall into one of four distinct groups of financial resilience: those Living on the Edge; those living Paycheck to Paycheck; those Holding Steady; and those who are Standing Strong. Nearly 4 in 10 households lacked financial resilience, while fewer than 2 in 10 appeared to be financially resilient.

 

The Stability and Predictive Power of Financial Literacy: Evidence From Longitudinal Data

This study from the FINRA Foundation, the University of Southern California, and George Washington University found that financial literacy measured in 2012 predicts financial outcomes in 2018.

 

The Knowledge We Gain and Share

The Foundation has an active research agenda on financial capability of American households and financial fraud in America.