The Financial Self-Efficacy Scale (FSES)

The Financial Self-Efficacy Scale (FSES) is a 6-item scale that measures how respondents manage certain financial problems and how they cope with setbacks. The FSES scores are expected to correlate with the respondent's level of confidence in being able to manage money to last for a lifetime (into retirement). The FSES can help financial literacy programs better understand, guide, and motivate their clients. The FSES can be administered pre-post intervention.


Administration Method
Number of Questions
Creator(s) of Tool
Lown, J.M. (2011). Development and Validation of a Financial Self-Efficacy Scale. Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning, 22(2), 54-63.
Scoring / Benchmarking
A high score corresponds to a higher level of perceived self-efficacy. Total scores can range from 6 to 24. Sum the responses to obtain a total score or calculate the mean score. The mean financial self-efficacy score is 17, so scores can be benchmarked as near the mean (16-18) and above or below the mean.
Background / Quality
The FSES demonstrates a high alpha reliability of .76, criterion-related and construct validity, and as demonstrated by the factor analysis, the FSES is uni-dimensional, specifically measuring financial psychometric properties.
Is there a cost associated with this tool?
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