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Federal Reserve research: Latest highlights

Each Federal Reserve Bank has a research division that conducts innovative research on monetary policy, the payment system and regional and community issues. This research supports policymaking and thought leadership important to the Federal Reserve Banks, as well as the communities they support. The Federal Reserve strives to inform the public through data and analysis, publications, presentations and educational resources.

Here are highlights of recently published Federal Reserve System research.

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

Personality traits and financial outcomes (Off-site)

Surveys indicate that about 4.5% of U.S. households do not have a bank account, about one-quarter do not own any credit cards, and it is common for credit card holders to carry revolving credit card debt (unpaid balances). This paper uses data from the 2021 Survey and Diary of Consumer Payment Choice and the University of Southern California Understanding America Study to examine whether self-reported personality traits have a significant effect on these financial outcomes when the analysis considers consumers’ income, demographics and financial literacy. Specifically, it studies which (if any) of the “Big Five: personality traits—openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness and neuroticism—influence consumers’ decisions to be unbanked, adopt a credit card or revolve credit card debt.

Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

Shifting trends in part-time employment (Off-site)

Attitudes about work have changed over recent decades and during the pandemic. Labor force participation has declined, remote work has increased in popularity, and a strong labor market has emboldened workers to look for higher pay and more flexible schedules.

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Mental health during the pandemic (Off-site)

More than two years after the COVID-19 pandemic began, moderate to severe anxiety in the U.S. ranked below its April 2020 level, due in part to improving economic conditions, lowered COVID-19 case severity and reduced social distancing restrictions. Moderate to severe anxiety had four distinct periods of fluctuation from April 2020 to December 2021.

To explore more of the Federal Reserve’s research and analysis efforts, check out the research pages of Federal Reserve Bank websites across the System: