How are Veterans Faring Financially? Updates and New Evidence from a National Survey

28 Pages Posted: 30 Jan 2020

See all articles by Gary R. Mottola

Gary R. Mottola

Research Director FINRA Foundation

Bill Skimmyhorn

Mason School of Business, College of William & Mary; U.S. Army Office of Economic and Manpower Analysis

Date Written: November 11, 2019

Abstract

This research provides updated and new evidence on the financial well-being of military veterans. We leverage data from two waves of the FINRA Investor Education Foundation’s National Financial Capability Study (NFCS) to examine how veterans are faring over time, relative to comparable civilians, and among different demographic subgroups. Overall, veterans in 2018 are faring better than those in 2015 in a number of areas. They have less difficulty covering expenses and bills, lower likelihoods of experiencing an income drop, and higher likelihoods of having emergency funds and retirement plans in addition to an employer plan. Veterans in 2018 are, however, more likely to report problematic credit card behaviors. Relative to non-veterans, veterans continue to fare better in many areas. They report higher financial well-being, lower levels of financial anxiety, and a higher likelihood of having a will. They are also more likely to participate in the gig economy. Veterans who are female; who are younger; who are married, divorced or separated; or who have financial dependents are faring worse than their veteran peers. Further, black veterans are faring somewhat better than white veterans, while those identifying as an “Other” race/ethnicity are faring worse.

Keywords: Financial Capability, Veterans, Military, National Financial Capability Study

JEL Classification: D12, D14, G28, H56

Suggested Citation

Mottola, Gary R. and Skimmyhorn, William, How are Veterans Faring Financially? Updates and New Evidence from a National Survey (November 11, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3516336 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3516336

Gary R. Mottola

Research Director FINRA Foundation ( email )

1735 K ST NW
Washington, DC 20006
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.finrafoundation.org

William Skimmyhorn (Contact Author)

Mason School of Business, College of William & Mary ( email )

Williamsburg, VA
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://mason.wm.edu/faculty/directory/full-time-faculty/skimmyhorn_w.php

U.S. Army Office of Economic and Manpower Analysis ( email )

West Point, NY
United States

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