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The Hidden Financial Lives of America’s Poor and Middle Class


Informing and inspiring leaders of social change

Part one of two

Presented by:
Jonathan Morduch, Professor of Policy and Economics, Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, New York University
Rachel Schneider, Senior Vice President, Center for Financial Services Innovation
H. Luke Shaefer, Associate Professor, University of Michigan, School of Social Work, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Diana Elliott, Research Manager, Financial Security and Mobility, The Pew Charitable Trusts
Moderated by:
Eric Nee, Managing Editor, Stanford Social Innovation Review
Date: Thursday, January 21, 2016
Time: 11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon PDT, 2:00-3:00 p.m. EDT

What are the implications of the U.S. Financial Diaries and other recent research and how can they provide insight to help families escape poverty, build stability, move up the ladder, and invest in the future? This webinar will look at innovative policies, products, and programs that seek to help households make ends meet, build security and stability, and invest for the future. We’ll consider innovative efforts in all sectors of society—from financial tech start-ups, to new policy approaches at all levels of government, and everything in between. 
This webinar will:
Explore the results and implications of new research on the financial lives of low- and moderate-income Americans
Illustrate how month-to-month income and expense volatility can be as important as income level
Highlight findings from Pew Charitable Trust’s recent research on mobility, financial stability and security
Discuss the new challenges households face and how they are adjusting
Look at gaps in the safety net and what it means for people who fall through them
The U.S. Financial Diaries project followed more than 235 low- and moderate-income American households for a year, attempting to record every dollar earned, received, borrowed, spent, given, and lent. Luke Shaefer and his coauthor Kathryn Edin conducted intensive research on households living on less than $2.00 a day in the United States. And Pew Charitable Trusts has conducted extensive nationally representative surveys on household finances and economic mobility. Together these research initiatives provide new insight into key challenges that American households face now.
The webinar will be led by Jonathan Morduch of New York University and Rachel Schneider of the Center for Financial Services Innovation, leaders of the U.S. Financial Diaries project. They will be joined by Luke Shaefer, associate professor at the University of Michigan and coauthor of $2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America, and Diana Elliott of the Financial Security and Mobility program at Pew Charitable Trusts.
Thanks to the generosity of Citi Foundation, this webinar is complimentary.