Financial literacy research projects
Our research and evaluation continue to give us a deeper understanding of the levels of financial literacy in New Zealand. Our current projects include:
The Current State of Knowledge
This document provides an overview of the current state of knowledge about financial education and its relationship to financial literacy. The findings are based on a review of OECD publications and recent research including a number of excellent meta-studies which themselves draw on a wider range of papers. Some recent work by the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income is also incorporated.
The Current State of Knowledge about Financial Education and Financial Literacy (PDF 925.65 KB, Nov 2013)
Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey
Every four years the Commission delivers a comprehensive survey examining the financial knowledge of adult New Zealanders.
2013 Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey reports
In 2013 the Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey also included questions about financial behaviour.
The survey found that the overall level of financial knowledge has not changed since 2009.
2013 Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey: Summary report (PDF 3.43 MB, Jun 2013)
2013 Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey: Full report (PDF 3.5 MB, Jun 2013)
2013 Financial Knowledge and Behaviour Survey data
2013 data and data dictionary (File 209.94 KB, Jun 2013) (zip file)
2013 data (File 1.16 MB, Sep 2013) (csv file)
2013 data dictionary (Excel 84.67 KB, Jun 2013) (xlsx file)
Previous financial knowledge surveys
For previous survey results, see financial literacy research and reports.
Financial Behaviour Index
The Financial Behaviour Index gives us 6-monthly snapshots of New Zealanders’ key financial behaviours such as goal setting, budgeting, saving and investing. The first benchmark measure was carried out in November 2011.
Financial Behaviour Index, Wave Six - May 2014 (PDF 1.55 MB, Jun 2014)
Financial Behaviour Index, Wave Five - November 2013 (PDF 1.52 MB, Dec 2013)
Financial Behaviour Index, Wave Four - May 2013 (PDF 1.19 MB, Jun 2013)
Financial Behaviour Index, Wave Three – November 2012 (PDF 1.2 MB, Dec 2012)
Financial Behaviour Index, Wave Two – May 2012 (PDF 1.13 MB, Dec 2012)
Financial Behaviour Index, November 2011 (benchmark) (PDF 1.28 MB, Sep 2013)
Charting a course: A review of financial education in New Zealand
Charting a course released in June 2012 reports the findings of a joint research project between the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income and Visa, into ways to increase the quality of formal education in New Zealand. It describes the broad landscape of formal financial education programmes in New Zealand, identifies gaps in that landscape and proposes measures to address those gaps.
A key finding of the research project is that the majority of tutors providing financial education do not receive any specialist training or professional development. As a result, Visa is funding a pilot programme of up to 15 tutors from Whitireia Polytechnic to attend an advanced course that will develop the content and skills they need to deliver financial education.
Read the full report:
Charting a course: A review of financial education in New Zealand (PDF 878.45 KB, Sep 2013)
Evaluation of tertiary tutors’ programme
Following the publication of Charting a Course, Visa funded twelve tutors from Whitireia Polytechnic to participate in financial education papers delivered by Massey University’s Fin-Ed Centre. The overall programme was evaluated by Anne Alkema of Heathrose research.
Read the final evaluation report:
Evaluation of Financial Literacy Education for Tertiary Educators (PDF 738.26 KB, Oct 2013)
Financial literacy among young adults
The Commission is working with Massey University in supporting its work for the New Zealand Centre for Personal Financial Education. The Centre is carrying out a longitudinal study of financial literacy among 18 to 20 year olds designed to contribute to better understanding of issues related to the level of ﬁnancial literacy in New Zealand.
This report covers the ﬁrst stage of the study:
How young New Zealanders learn about personal finance: A longitudinal study (PDF 5.9 KB, Nov 2012)
The economic impact of financial literacy
During 2012-13 we expect to report on the results of a peer-reviewed research project into the economic impact of financial literacy.
The Economic Impact of Formal Financial Education project is a partnership between the Commission, the Treasury and the Ministry of Economic Development. It aims to identify and model the key relationships between financial education programmes, financial behaviours by individuals and households, the outcomes of those behaviours and the resulting short-, medium- and long-term economic impacts.
This assessment of financial education’s economic contribution will provide a better understanding of the dynamics of financial literacy and help guide the partners’ decisions about future investment in this area.