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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Results Of National Financial Capability Survey Released

Results of a nationwide study measuring the financial capabilities of American adults and looking at how Americans save, borrow, and plan for their future were released yesterday.

The 2009 Financial Capability Study was sponsored by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation developed in consultation with the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Presidents Advisory Council on Financial Literacy.

The full study consists of findings from three linked surveys:
  • National Survey. A national, random-digit-dialed telephone survey of 1,488 respondents with over-sampling to enable segmentation by selected demographic variables (e.g., race, household income, education level) (released December 2009)
  • State-by-State Survey. A state-by-state online survey of approximately 25,000 respondents (roughly 500 per state, plus DC) (to be released in 2010)
  • Military Survey. An online survey of 800 military personnel and spouses (to be released in 2010)
The national survey found that:
  • Only 41% of parents have set aside money for their children’s college education
  • The majority of Americans do not have an emergency savings fund
  • The majority of Americans are not adequately preparing for their own retirement
  • More than 1 in 5 survey respondents use alternative borrowing methods, such as payday loans or pawn shops
  • Only 46% of survey respondents correctly answered two basic questions about how interest rates and inflation work.

National Survey Results & Details Available On FINRA Foundation Web Site

Additional data from the survey will be released in the future.