Financial Coaching and Medication Adherence: Introducing the “FINMed” Coaching Model

The report introduces a new intervention called “FINMed.” FINMed is brief, solution-focused financial coaching session designed for people facing new ongoing out-of-pocket medical expenses or a pattern of problems paying for ongoing health care needs. The coaching involves:

  • Determining the patient’s health goals and motivation
  • Planning for the costs of health care
  • Setting up a process to make sure the patient will have the funds needed when the next set of care (e.g., refill or therapy session) is due

This reports present research into the relationship between household financial behaviors and the ability to pay for out-of-pocket medical expenses, particularly prescription drugs. Overall, households struggling to manage their finances appear more likely to skip medical treatments due to cost. In turn, failing to follow through on a medical treatment can lead to higher costs and worsening health status.

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My Classroom Economy Evaluation Results Now Available

The Center for Financial Security recently completed an evaluation of My Classroom Economy (MCE), an innovative approach to financial education. In contrast to more traditional financial education programs based around lesson plans, MCE is experiential. Teachers establish a classroom-based economy that integrates into the school day as a classroom management system. Research suggests that this type of experiential approach is a promising teaching strategy, with the added benefit of minimizing time away from other classroom activities.

During the 2015-2016 school year, 24 elementary schools in the School District of Palm Beach County, FL participated in the evaluation. Students in MCE classrooms show consistent gains in financial knowledge, budgeting, financial socialization, and economic experience after 10 weeks. These effects range in size but are all statistically significant and positive. Overall, the results of this study are encouraging and highlight the promise of experiential learning programs like MCE for elementary school–age students.

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Presentation slides from the September 21, 2016 webinar are available to view.

A supplementary guide discusses the Center’s development of the survey measures used in the evaluation.

The evaluation was performed under contract TOS-14F-0028 for the U.S. Department of the Treasury. 

J. Michael Collins and Carly Urban Publish Paper on Retirement Planning in Economic Inquiry

StagesRetirement planning is a difficult task for many people in the U.S. and as studies by the National Institute on Retirement Security show, about 38 million working-age households do not have any retirement savings. Various tactics to increase participation in retirement savings in the workplace have been employed, such as tax subsidies and automatic defaults. Some states are even seeking to pass legislation on state run retirement programs for private sector employees.

A newly published paper,The Role of Information on Retirement Planning: Evidence from a Field Study, authored by CFS Faculty Director J. Michael Collins and CFS Research Fellow Carly Urban, present the findings of a randomized field study showing that an information-based intervention increased participation in retirement plan savings. Education programs offered to employees increased their monthly contributions to retirement accounts, a finding that shows promise for retirement education programs as a strategy for increased saving.

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MyBudgetCoach Pilot Study: Final Report and Summary Brief

my-budget-coachThis pilot study explores the delivery and effectiveness of MyBudgetCoach (MyBC), a financial coaching program designed to help low- and moderate-income adults develop budgeting skills, set financial goals, and work towards those goals. This study compares two modes of program delivery: in-person coaching and fully remote coaching. By testing financial coaching in these two contexts, this project seeks to shed light on how to increase the scale of coaching using technology while maintaining an individualized focus on clients’ goals and promoting behavior change.

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State-Mandated Financial Education: A National Database of Graduation Requirements, 1970-2014

finracroppedWith support from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, researchers from Montana State University and the Federal Reserve Board created a new database of state-mandated high school personal finance and economics education requirements, spanning the years 1970 through 2014, for all 50 states. The database provides unprecedented detail about state financial education standards, as well as available information about whether the state requires the personal finance or economics content to be included on standardized tests required for graduation.

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