Question of the Day: What is most cited reason people give for not having a bank account?

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Feb 05, 2019
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Question of the Day, Checking Accounts, Savings, Research

Answer: Do not have enough money to keep in account

Cited = named as a reason for not having an account

Main = percent of respondents that listed the reason as the main reason for not having an account.

Questions:

  • What's the minimum amount you think you need to have a bank account? 
  • Do you think it’s important to have a bank account? Explain.
  • The number 2 item cited for not having a bank is "don't trust banks." What do you think leads to this distrust?
  • Respondents also indicated account fees were "too high" and "unpredictable." What are some examples of bank fees? 

Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.

Behind the numbers (FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked 2017):

  • More than half (52.7 percent) of unbanked households cited “Do not have enough money to keep in an account” as a reason for not having an account, the most commonly cited reason. This reason was also the most commonly cited main reason for not having an account (34.0 percent).
  • Almost one-third (30.2 percent) of unbanked households cited “Don’t trust banks” as a reason for not having an account, the second-most commonly cited reason. This reason was also the second-most commonly cited main reason (12.6 percent).
  • As in previous years, higher proportions of unbanked households that previously had an account cited “Bank account fees are too high” (29.9 percent) or “Bank account fees are unpredictable” (24.9 percent) in 2017, compared with unbanked households that never had an account (21.1 and 17.0 percent, respectively). 

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About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.