Understanding the Pathways to Financial Well-Being
The National Financial Well-Being Survey Report is the second report in a series from the Understanding the Pathways to Financial Well-Being project.
In order to measure and study the factors that support consumer financial well-being, in 2015, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (the Bureau) contracted with Abt Associates to field a large, national survey to collect information on the financial well-being of U.S. adults. The present report uses data collected from that survey to answer a series of questions on the relationship among financial well-being and four key factors: objective financial situation, financial behavior, financial skill, and financial knowledge. In this study, we aim to enhance understanding of financial well-being and the factors that may support it by exploring these relationships.
Key Findings Include:
- An individual’s objective financial situation, as measured by key indicators such as financial resources or ability to make ends meet, is strongly correlated with his/her own perceived financial well-being.
- Financial behavior is associated with financial well-being indirectly through its relation with objective financial situation.
- Financial skill—that is, the ability to find, process, and use financial knowledge—appears to be more closely related to financial behavior than having factual financial knowledge.