*Research Brief Household Financial Survey

Financial well-being in low- and moderate-income households: How does it compare to the general population?

Key Findings

  • Subjective financial well-being was associated with and complemented observed financial conditions of households. For example, the reported rates of material hardship and financial struggles were extremely high in households that reported lower levels of financial well-being, while these financial difficulties were lower in households with higher levels of financial well-being. At the same time, higher incomes did not always correspond to higher well-being levels for all individuals.
  • The largest increases in financial well-being were observed in households with higher liquid savings levels; the ability to access liquidity for emergencies was also strongly related to financial well-being.
  • Some adverse credit-related situations (e.g., the use of alternative financial services or being rejected for credit) were related to lower levels of financial well-being, and greater financial confidence and management skills tended to be associated with higher financial well-being levels.

Project: Refund to Savings (R2S)

Citation

Sun, S., Kondratjeva, O., Roll, S. P., Despard, M., & Grinstein-Weiss, M. (2018, December). Financial well-being in low- and moderate-income households: How does it compare to the general population? (SPI Research Brief No. 18-03). St. Louis, MO: Washington University, Social Policy Institute.