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Prudential study explores financial lives of Americans by race, gender, sexual identity, caregiver status

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Bright spots and areas of optimism exist within traditionally underserved groups in the face of income inequality, retirement insecurity and household debt, new data from Prudential Financial reveals. The in-depth exploration of data from Prudential’s Financial Wellness Census™ highlights the dramatic differences in the experiences of diverse populations within the U.S., many of whom were disproportionately impacted by the 2008 financial crisis.

The report, “The Cut – Exploring Financial Wellness Within Diverse Populations,” is based on a survey of more than 3,000 U.S. adults and examines the financial lives of a diverse group of Americans: women, black Americans, Latino Americans, Asian Americans, caregivers, and the LGBTQ community.

“Resilient and diverse communities are the foundation of a stable and strong economy. Their progress enables our progress,” said Judy Dougherty, Prudential’s financial wellness officer. “This new analysis presents a layered portrait of the financial lives of Americans and exposes factors that underlie and sometimes impede our ability to achieve financial security. These insights are critically important to Prudential’s businesses, informing our efforts to develop products and services that help more Americans improve their financial health.”

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The data highlights challenges and opportunities

The research details the wide range of outcomes, experiences and attitudes among traditionally underserved communities. For example:

  • By significant margins, black Americans at all income levels are more likely than the general population to prioritize helping others financially: taking care of parents or other family members, providing college tuition for their children, helping children with a down payment on a home, leaving an inheritance to their heirs, and giving to charity.
  • The average annual income for women in the survey was $52,521, compared with $84,006 for men—women reported earning about 63 cents for every dollar earned by men. Additionally, 54 percent of all women reported being the primary breadwinner in their household, irrespective of its makeup.
  • Thirty-eight percent of caregivers in the study do not think they will ever be able to retire versus only 25 percent of non-caregivers. Although caregivers for children with special needs were as likely as other caregivers and non-caregivers to have a defined contribution retirement plan, they were also the most likely to have taken a loan or hardship withdrawal.

“The journey to financial wellness is deeply personal,” said Lata Reddy, Prudential’s senior vice president, Diversity, Inclusion & Impact. “While there are common experiences that tie us all together, there are also distinct factors that are unique to our individual journeys that impact the ultimate destination. These factors need to be clearly understood for true progress to be made. The first step is to actively listen to the voices in our communities, and it is in this spirit that this research was conducted.”

For more information, view the full report, “The Cut – Exploring Financial Wellness Within Diverse Populations.” Prudential has also created a three-minute self-assessment to enable individuals to discover where they stand on their own personal path to financial wellness. To take the financial wellness assessment and to explore a visualization of its data, visit prudential.com/stateofus.

Prudential Financial Wellness Census methodology

The original Financial Wellness CensusTM was conducted by Prudential’s Decision Insights Group and Chadwick Martin Bailey within the United States between Sept. 20 and Oct. 9, 2017, among a nationally representative sample of 3,013 U.S. adults ages 25-70. For the complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, please contact prudential@sharpthink.com.

About Prudential Financial, Inc.


Prudential Financial, Inc.
Yemi Rose

Sharp Communications
Beverly Basiga
212-829-0002 ext.113

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Debt Free Guys – Award Winning Personal Finance Blog Specifically for the LGBTQ Community

The personal finance industry has taken notice of the award-winning highly informative personal finance by the Debt Free Guys who focus on for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer community as their target underserved audience.  Debt Free Guys is the passionate and often funny collaboration of  David Auten and John Schneider III who share their story of how as a gay couple they use to live beyond their previous means and accumulated $51,000 of consumer debt.  They woke up to the disadvantage that put them in and decided to do something about it.  They strategized together a plan to pay off that $51,000 and as a result Debt Free Guys was born.  In addition to writing they host audio and video interviews of experts in an array of fields that also focus personal finance in its many forms from managing your money to career tips that help you earn more too.

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They have a solid understanding that there’s more to life than money.  They share that you need to give money the importance it deserves, but warn that you should not make it more important than it actually is.  Your freedom from debt provides financial freedom to do more with what you have.  After paying of debt and living within your means – it’s like getting a raise.  You have more money to invest in your long-term financial health providing you security and peace of mind.  Having fun is critical to a balanced life and paying for that fun should be balanced as well.

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A few selected past advice interviews they have completed are:

David and John have built a credible resource and have been referenced in Business Insider, US News, Market Watch (and here), TIME, The Motley Fool, MSN Money, The Huffington Post, and more.  Further, their rich and thoughtful content caught the eye of Forbes.com where they were invited to become regular content contributors.

A little about David and John:

  • Nationally recognized experts on queer and straight personal finance
  • Authority on debt fee living, investing and financial independence
  • Speaker at FinCon 2017 and on Prudential’s 2016 LGBT Financial Experience Tour and 2017 LGBT Financial Experience Symposium
  • Brand ambassador and partner for MassMutual, Prudential and Capital One
  • Online contributor for Forbes, The Motley Fool, YahooFinance, Business Insider, MSN Money & Time
  • 2015, 2016, 2017 & 2018 Plutus Award Nominee and winners of Best Personal Finance Blog in 2018
  • Co-authors of the hard-copy book, 4: The Four Principles of a Debt Free Life
  • Co-authors of the eBooks: Money Conscious Student, Money Conscious Financial Planning Guide & Do You Know How to Be Money Conscious
  • Over 20,000 social media followers on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest & YouTube

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