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Filene Report: Members' Happiness, Money Skills Related
MADISON, Wis. (2/13/13)--Credit union members with strong financial skills are more likely to be happy and experience less stress, according to a new report from the Filene Research Institute. This presents an opportunity for credit unions, which can improve members' financial capability and, by extension, their overall well-being.

The report, Mind over Money: Measuring Health and Happiness among Credit Union Members, explores the interrelationships between financial capability and psychological well-being through analysis of 1,600 U.S. credit union respondents to an online survey.

The report also describes the importance of self-efficacy and individuals' belief in the ability to take care of their finances. Such belief engenders the confidence required to effectively control personal finances.

Findings in the report include:

  • Gender splits are real. The data suggest that female members generally believe less in their own abilities than males and that they also are more stressed and unhappier than males. When it comes to managing money, the data also suggest that women are not as good as men at keeping track of their finances. Credit unions should consider segmented outreach and tools for women.
  • Middle-aged and younger adults need more help. Adult members aged 44 years or under have significantly lower financial capability and psychological well-being than those aged 45 years or older, including those in, or nearing, retirement. Retirees, on the other hand, are the most capable group of the sample.
  • Using multiple institutions is linked to higher capability. Those who reported using another institution in addition to their credit union were more likely to report better overall financial and psychological health, affirming a long-standing tradition of credit unions referring members for products and services they don't offer.
To download the report, use the link.
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