Latest report

  • The average observed financial wellbeing score for March 2022 is 50.0, down 1.1 pts from the peak in March 2021. However, the score remains a substantially 2.6 pts higher than two years ago at the beginning of the pandemic.
  • Economic uncertainty, mildly pessimistic consumer sentiment and inflation concerns have been driving continued high levels of precautionary savings, with balances stable YoY and 46% higher than two years ago.
  • The median annual inflows and income remained largely unchanged, but the median annual outflows and expenditure increased by $1.6k YoY, reflecting the continuing rebound in consumption in 2021.
  • At the population level, there was a 6 ppt increase in the proportion of Australians consistently spending at high levels, which is driven by the YoY increase in annual outflows and expenditure. Despite the increase in outflows and expenditures, the proportion of Australians experiencing payment problems has remained stable.

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Line chart displaying the average observed financial wellbeing score March 2021 - March 2022
  • The Australian Consumer Financial Wellbeing Report provides a nationally representative view of Australians’ financial wellbeing, and the annual rate of change.

    Based on the actual transactional and account data of over five million CommBank customers who do most, or all, of their personal banking with CommBank, the report tracks financial wellbeing outcomes experienced by more than one quarter of the Australian adult population.

    The report’s methodology draws on the Melbourne Institute (MI) Observed Financial Wellbeing Scale1, developed by the Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research at the University of Melbourne. The scale is not simply a measure of income or wealth, but, more importantly, a measure of the extent to which Australians have;

    • Financial outcomes in which they meet their financial obligations;
    • Financial freedom to make choices that allow them to enjoy life;
    • Control of their finances; and
    • Financial security – now, in the future, and under possible adverse circumstances.

    Five major indicators of financial wellbeing are combined to produce a single score, from zero (low) to 100 (high) calculated on 12 months of data. 

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