Burrell, T. et al.Understanding the financial lives of UK adults – Findings from the FCA’s Financial Lives Survey 2017


Tim Burrell, James Hopkins, Claire Older, Edward Ripley, Margaret Watmough & Janette Weir

Oktober 2017

Financial Conduct Authority FCA, publication reference: 005498

The Financial Lives Survey 2017 is the first time the FCA has designed a survey of this kind in terms of its scale, its robustness of design, its content and the potential for further analysis. Based on nearly 13,000 face-to-face and online interviews, Financial Lives is the FCA's largest tracking survey on consumers and finance. It reveals a wealth of information about different types of consumer and their experiences of financial products and services. It is the key source of information that underpins the FCA's consumer protection work and also provides valuable insights for any organization focusing on consumers and finance.

The survey aimed to:

  • estimate the number of UK adults holding any one of around 70 products and to profile those who do and do not hold these products

  • understand consumers as people, and observe the financial behaviors and experiences they have in the context of their everyday lives

  • analyse results in different ways, to see, for example, where the young and old differ in their behavior, or where some characteristics such as low income affect people in the same way whatever their age

  • demonstrate differences in behavior and experiences by sector

  • identify and quantify harm or potential harm

Market research is often designed to answer specific questions, namely to test particular hypotheses, and the Financial Lives Survey 2017 provides ample opportunity to do this. This survey provides data that can be used to identify where consumers may be experiencing harm, and it has already provided consumer evidence in a number of pieces of FCA work including the Financial Advice Market Review (FAMR) Baseline report.

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