Relationship between Financial Well-Being, Life Stress, and the Uptake of Financial Coaching

Document Type

Issue/Research Brief/Blog

Publication Date



financial education program components, financial coaching and counseling


Over the past 20 years, financial coaching has grown in popularity as a strategy for helping people to improve their financial self-efficacy, achieve their financial goals, and increase perceptions of financial well-being. Initial research has demonstrated its effectiveness in achieving positive outcomes, including reduced debt and increased savings for low-income clients. However, one persistent challenge in the field is encouraging client participation.

Our research uses administrative data from Oakland, California’s Brilliant Baby program to empirically explore the relationship between financial well-being, perceived stress and financial coaching uptake among economically vulnerable clients. To do so, we used a regression model to evaluate the relationship between coaching uptake (attending at least one coaching session within 151 days of enrolling in the program) and the variables used to predict enrollment – client responses to CFPB’s Financial Well-Being Scale and their perceived level of stress, as well as in interaction between these two variables and the outcome.