Bankrate’s monthly survey of six questions measures how secure Americans feel about their personal finances compared to 12 months ago. From Sept. 5-8, 2013, telephone interviews (on landlines and cellphones) with 1,002 adults living in the continental U.S. were conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. The results of Bankrate’s Financial Security Index have a margin of error of plus or minus 3.6 percentage points. This month, the index declined to 99.5, down 1 point from August.
- Just 8% of suburbanites and 10% of city-dwellers think home prices will go down.
- 57% of people with a higher net worth think prices will go up, while 46% of people with a lower net worth think they’ll go down.
- 62% of mothers with kids younger than 18 think home prices will rise, compared to 52% of all other women.
- Around 1 in 6 women (16%) feel less job secure, compared to 1 in 11 men (9%).
- 12% of people aged 50-64 feel more secure in their jobs, while 28% of everyone else said the same thing.
- Unlike most FSI surveys, there were no major differences in job security among income classes.
- 42% of Republicans feel less comfortable with their savings, compared to 29% of Democrats and 30% of Independents.
- 39% of women feel less comfortable with their savings, versus 27% of men.
- 25% of respondents younger than 30 years old said they’re more comfortable with their savings, while that’s the case for 14% of people 30 and older.
- 21% of people with at least some college education are more comfortable with their debt, compared to just 12% of less-educated people.
- 23% of people ages 18 through 64 are less comfortable with their debt, though only 13% of people 65 and older feel that way.
- 25% of women are less comfortable with their debt, while 18% of men say the same.
- 27% of city-dwellers and suburbanites say their net worth has increased, compared to 19% of rural respondents.
- 32% of parents with kids younger than 18 have increased net worth, and so do 23% of other respondents.
- 28% of respondents younger than 65 say their net worth is up, while just 14% of those 65 and older say the same thing.
- 29% of Democrats and 28% of Independents are better off today, compared to 20% of Republicans.
- 29% of men say they’re doing better, slightly more than the 22% of women.
- 29% of people whose education didn’t go beyond high school say they’re worse off today, versus 18% of people with a college degree.
Editor’s note: Percentages may not equal 100, due to rounding.
Bankrate’s Financial Security Index gauges how Americans feel today versus a year ago on vital financial matters. An index value of less than 100 indicates declining levels of financial security; a value greater than 100 reveals higher levels of security compared to 12 months ago.