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Prudential Research Asian American Financial Experience

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Asian Americans’ financial experience most influenced by family

Our 2016 Asian American Financial Experience study reveals that although members of the Asian American/Pacific Islander community originate from more than 40 countries and speak dozens of languages, they are united by a shared focus on the financial progress, stability and security of the extended family. At the same time, Asian Americans face many of the same financial challenges as the U.S. general population, such as saving for retirement and managing household budgets.

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Key findings of the study:


The strong influence of family

• Asian Americans surveyed place a higher importance on providing college tuition for their children, and taking care of family members as one of their top financial goals compared to the U.S. general population.

• Approximately one-third of Asian Americans identify themselves as caregivers for another person (e.g., spouse, parent, relative), compared to 22% of the U.S. general population.

• 20% of Asian Americans provide financial assistance to their relatives, versus only 6% of the U.S. general population.


Retirement and finances

• Asian Americans surveyed have a median personal income of $62,000 and median household income of $87,000, versus $42,000 and $62,000, respectively, for the U.S. general population. Where Asian American populations are concentrated— in the East and West—income levels are comparable to those of the general population.

• More than a third of Asian Americans believe they could maintain their current lifestyle for a year or more if their household lost all of its regular monthly income.

• Like the U.S. general population, Asian Americans rank retirement-related goals, such as having enough money to maintain current lifestyles through retirement (49%) and not becoming a financial burden to loved ones (38%), as one of their top financial priorities.

• Asian Americans believe they will be able to retire at age 64.6–more than a year earlier than the U.S. general population.

• 58% of Asian Americans surveyed feel that they are better off financially than their parents were at the same age, versus 49% of the U.S. general population.


Need to improve financial literacy

• Asian Americans are more inclined to seek out information before making a financial decision and respondents indicated they consult more resources than the U.S. general population (5.8 resources on average versus 4.1).

• Family members are cited as preferred source of financial information by 44% of Asian Americans, followed by friends (37%), financial professionals (36%) and employer or employer-sponsored resources (35%).

• Asian Americans surveyed also demonstrate a higher propensity to consumer information from less traditional sources, such as social media (18%), investment clubs (13%) and faith-based organizations (13%).

• Only 18% of Asian Americans work with a financial professional compared to 26% of the U.S. general population, although 43% of Asian Americans who don’t did indicate that they are open to the idea.

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