Financial lives in uncertain times
Understanding patterns of financial wellbeing is a key to protecting Australians against financial distress in times of crisis.
Ensuring Australians are able to build financial resilience can help to protect all of us against economic shocks. These include not just extraordinary events such as the bushfires of summer and the global COVID-19 pandemic but also personal shocks such as job loss, illness, car repairs and unexpected bills.
Using ANZ’s Financial Wellbeing Indicator, this project explored patterns of financial wellbeing across vulnerable groups. This enables us to understand how financial wellbeing interacts with the long-term structural drivers of inequality and insecurity. This is important as individual exposure to risk has increased as work has become less secure and the social safety net has been weakened.
In the shadow of a crisis like COVID-19, discovering the barriers to increased financial resilience is vital. Taking steps to overcome them will ensure we really are all in this together.
The research was made possible by the generous support of ANZ through the ANZ Tony Nicholson Fellowship and the provision under licence of Roy Morgan Single Source Survey data.
The concept of economic dignity extends how we understand financial capability. It is not just about people having knowledge and skills, but also about how social and economic structures and systems shape their choices.
Financial wellbeing as a concept has become popular in the fields of social policy, service delivery and personal financial products. This working paper traces the development of the concept.
To understand why people on low incomes do or do not take out insurance we need to understand their overall financial circumstances and the multiple risks they face.