How Americans are approaching financial wellness in 2023

Published March 23, 2023

Financial wellness is more than a “nice to have.” It’s a goal most Americans want to achieve. In a recent survey* by Edward Jones with Morning Consult, 93% of Americans view financial wellness as important.1 However, nearly half (43%) report they don’t feel financially stable, and nearly one-third have less than $500 in their emergency savings funds.2

While financial wellness can take many forms, the survey revealed most Americans define it as having no anxiety over monthly bills, enough money to take care of their families and no debt.3

The importance of emergency savings

Experts recommend that you should have three to six months of living expenses in an emergency savings fund. However, nearly 2 in 5 (37%) respondents expect theirs to last no longer than a month — with only 38% considering their emergency savings fund to be fully funded.4 This is consistent with another revealing survey number — nearly one-third say they have less than $500 in their emergency savings funds.5

This shortfall is understandably distressing. When asked about how they are feeling about their emergency savings funds, 28% of respondents said they feel stressed, 25% feel concerned and 25% feel anxious.6

Improving financial wellness in uncertain economic times

Amidst ongoing economic uncertainty, Americans are giving a lot of thought to what they can do  to improve to their financial wellness. The most common “next steps” respondents identified include:

  • Pay off debt (49%)7
  • Increase income (42%)8
  • Stick to a monthly budget (34%)9

However, to prioritize these next steps, some people said they are also putting off making bigger financial decisions and longer-term goals, including:

  • Purchasing a home (16%)10
  • Changing careers (11%)11
  • Retiring (11%)12

What financial advisors can do

Our research shows having a trusted financial advisor can play a significant role in building financial wellness. In fact, this survey revealed that people who work with a financial advisor are more than twice as likely to feel very confident about their financial wellness than those who don’t work with a financial advisor (40% versus 18%, respectively).13

This confidence is reflected in the size of their emergency savings funds. According to the survey, 79% of those who use financial advisors have at least $1,000 in their funds, compared to only 36% of those who don’t use a financial advisor.14

How we can help

No matter how you’re feeling about your own financial wellness — worried, uncertain, upbeat or somewhere in between — we can help. Our financial advisors can work with you to build healthy financial habits within a personalized financial strategy, so you can feel more secure and in control when life happens.

* This survey was conducted by global data intelligence company Morning Consult among a national sample of 2,202 adults from January 6–28, 2023.


Important information:

Footnotes 1-14 Edward Jones and Morning Consult, “How Americans Are Approaching Financial Wellness in 2023”, January 2023