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    Users of financial services


    A certain level of knowledge of fundamental financial concepts and basic numeracy skills are needed in order to effectively participate in financial markets. To assess people's understanding of financial concepts the Financial Capability and Consumer Protection survey instrument includes core questions relating to 'Financial knowledge'. It covers concepts such as inflation, simple interest, compound interest or money illusion. In addition, it includes questions to test people's basic numeracy skills needed, for instance, to be able to shop around and to identify cheaper bargains. Since knowledge alone does not necessarily translate into sound financial behavior the questionnaire further collects information on people's 'Financial behavior and attitudes'. For example, it captures people's ability to plan how to use money they receive, whether they are able to keep track of expenses or to make provisions for unexpected expenses. To get a better understanding of the current state of 'Financial inclusion', some questions relate to the ways people save or borrow: formally or informally. To improve the effectiveness of existing financial consumer protection mechanisms the 'Consumer protection' section gathers information on levels of satisfaction with products and services provided by financial institutions, the extent to which people trust in financial institutions and their confidence in existing recourse mechanisms. Lastly, to identify the most vulnerable groups of the population the survey instrument also captures information on respondents' socio-demographics such as their age, gender, income level, educational attainment, etc.


    All Financial Capability and Consumer Protection surveys are nationally representative. The unit of analysis are individuals. The target population comprises the entire civilian, non-institutionalized population age 18 or older. To fulfill the requirement of a scientifically sound survey, in each country a probability sample selection mode is applied. Typically, the most recent population census data is used as a sampling frame. Alternatives are only used in case no up-to-date or reliable census is available (in Romania and Bosnia & Herzegovina voting registers are used instead). The stratification criteria are geography and population size. Clustering is mostly achieved through three sampling stages. The first stage consists of administrative geographic areas (primary sampling units: PSU), which are drawn proportional to size. If a list of dwellings or households within each PSU is available, it is used to randomly select households at the second stage. If such information is not accessible, households are randomly selected by random walk methods (Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria). Finally, within each selected household eligible respondents are randomly drawn, mostly by means of the Kish grid.

    Table 1: Overview of surveys



    Sample size

    No. of questions

























    West Bank & Gaza




    The new survey instrument

    Leveraging on a diagnostic tool developed by the Russia Financial Literacy and Education Trust Fund which was specifically designed to measure financial capability in a way that is relevant for low- and middle-income environments, the World Bank’s Financial Inclusion and Consumer Protection Service Line developed a new instrument. Figure 1 sets out its structure. This instrument is used in ongoing or planned surveys in 14 additional countries. The data will also be made available on this website.

    Figure 1: Structure of the new instrument

Current survey projects

We are currently collecting data in 6 countries.
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