The State of Financial Literacy Among U.S. Adults

The State of Financial Literacy Among U.S. Adults


The 2018 TIAA Institute-GFLEC Personal Finance Index

This report on the second wave of the TIAA Institute-GFLEC Personal Finance Index (P-Fin Index) provides a comprehensive barometer of U.S. adults’ readiness to make sound financial decisions. The P-Fin Index is unique in its capacity to examine financial literacy across eight common financial activities: earning, consuming, saving, investing, borrowing, insuring, understanding risk and gathering information. The results of the first wave were reported in 2017.

Key aspects

Most Americans lack the knowledge necessary to make routine financial decisions.

Financial literacy tends to be lowest in the area of comprehending risk and highest concerning debt and debt management.

Individuals with greater financial knowledge are more likely to experience positive financial outcomes.

Full content of the publication


Financial knowledge Financial literacy


Paul Yakoboski

Annamaria Lusardi

Academic Director, Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC)

Andrea Hasler

Additional Information

Date published


Document Type



Estados Unidos





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