The importance of physical and mental health is indisputable. However, what about people’s financial health and well-being? The 2022 Financial Well-being Study in Mexico was recently published. Through an online test, the company Invested interviewed 1,500 employees from different companies. Participants were asked to answer specific points on the following areas: savings, debt, planning, retirement, and wealth.
Some of the figures from the survey analysis are revealing. For example, to the question: “Which of these reasons causes you more stress?”, the most indicated answer was “Money issues”, with 53.7%, followed by “My work” and in third place, “Health issues ”. In the same trend, 52.93% considered that the stress caused by financial issues has a negative impact on the performance of daily activities.
For a doctor to make a first diagnosis about the patient’s health, it is necessary for the patient to answer basic questions about symptoms and sensations. In the same way, the ideal is that each of us is more or less clear about our financial status. However, the study in question shows worrying figures: just over 52% do not know what their monthly fixed expenses are, and 40% are not clear about what their income is. If we do not know how much we earn or how much we spend, the diagnosis of our financial health will be difficult to pin down.
There is a parameter that says that, of the total monthly income, if up to 20% of it is used to pay debts (mortgages, credits and loans) then you have good financial health. The data from the Study put us on alert in this regard, since 60% of those surveyed allocate more than 20% of their income to debt payments. Of that percentage, 18.97% use more than 50% of their income to cover debts, which is frankly serious. Without a doubt, these are patients in a true state of shock.
It would be worth speculating whether that almost 19% is part of the 31.70% who responded that they are not saving anything for retirement, compared to the 68.3% who do have a retirement account. One of the most surprising data that the survey revealed refers to the retirement age: 72% of those surveyed answered that they want to retire at 60 years of age, when the law is clear in this regard and marks 65 as the minimum age for retirement. .
As can be deduced from these data, it is understandable that mental health (specifically stress) is closely related to financial well-being. A possible solution would not only be to go to psychological therapy, but also to establish concrete plans for the financial education of the population in two structural areas: government and private banking. For example, that the banks establish as a requirement that, if it is the first loan for the applicant, they take and pass a basic course in personal finance; or that the federal government extend the Financial Education Week, taught online, to a widely publicized campaign in the media, just as it does to prevent drug use. If a country is an organism, it is urgent that all its cells are regularly healthy in order to have a stable financial public health. And it all starts, as you know, from education, from prevention. Let’s start talking not only about our physical, mental and emotional health, but also, and just as importantly, about our financial health.