A new report has been prepared by The Federal Reserve Bank and released last week. The title is “Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2013
”. It covers many topics that are very popular and frequently discussed here, such as retirement plans and preparedness, household savings, debt levels, and home ownership.
From the press release (here
In its new Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households, the Federal Reserve Board provides a snapshot of the self-perceived financial and economic well-being of U.S. households and the issues they face, based on responses to the Board's 2013 Survey of Household Economics and Decisionmaking. The report provides insight into numerous topics of current relevance to household finances, including: housing and living arrangements; credit access and behavior; education and student loan debt; savings; retirement; and health expenses.
Overall, the survey found that as of September 2013 many households were faring well, but that sizable fractions of the population were at the same time displaying signs of financial stress. Over 60 percent of respondents reported that their families were either "doing okay" or "living comfortably" financially; although one-fourth said that they were "just getting by" financially and another 13 percent said they were struggling to do so. The effects of the recession also continued to be felt by many households, with 34 percent reporting that they were somewhat worse off or much worse off financially than they had been five years earlier in 2008 and 34 percent reporting that they were about the same.
Most of the topics in this report are frequently seen in financial media, but those studies are often carried out by companies with marketing agendas or services to sell. Not the case here. This is a “first edition”, so no data from previous years for trends or comparisons, but updates will be fascinating and surely frequent topics of discussion here. This is also an excellent baseline for folks to use for comparison with their own financial well-being.