Financial life: most Brazilians live on the edge, according to a survey by Febraban

Research by Febraban shows that Brazilians live on the edge of financial balance; lack of financial education hinders

Financial life: most Brazilians live on the edge, according to a survey by Febraban
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At the limit of financial balance. This is how the average Brazilian lives, according to a survey by the Brazilian Federation of Banks, Febraban. The survey was carried out for the launch of the Brazilian Financial Health Index (I-SFB), developed by the institution to monitor and analyze the financial behavior of Brazilians.

The I-SFB has a scale from zero to 100 points, 100 points being the healthiest possible, and seven rating ranges, ranging from “Bad” to “Great”. The survey showed that the average score of Brazilians was 57 points, which means financial health at the limit – that is, any unforeseen or overspending may result in indebtedness or loss of resources.

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According to the survey, the pattern of responses revealed that Brazilians fight for a healthy financial life, but find it difficult to make an emergency reserve – 65.7% of respondents said they think a lot before spending money; however, 69.4% spend more or all they earn.

Besides, the lack of financial education is an obstacle: only 34.1% of Brazilians feel able to identify a good investment and six out of ten consider that the way they manage their financial lives does not allow them to enjoy life and feel secure in the future.

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As the survey shows, 48.3% of Brazilians are in the lower half of the classification scale, in the “Low”, “Very Low” and “Bad” ranges; and 41.6% are in the top half, in the “Good”, “Very Good” and “Great” ranges. Right in the middle, in the “Ok” range, are 10.1% of Brazilians.

In terms of region, the research showed that the South is the region with the best scores in the “Good”, “Very Good” and “Great” ranges. The region with the highest number of Brazilians in the “Low”, “Very Low” and “Bad” ranges is the Northeast.

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For the I-SFB index, Febraban considered that financial health has five dimensions:

  • Financial Freedom (being able to make consumption choices);
  • Financial Security (ability to meet financial obligations);
  • Financial Skill (making good money-related decisions);
  • Financial Behavior (discipline regarding expenses and savings)
  • Financial Proficiency (Skill combined with Behavior).
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