We humans like to analyze ourselves. We’ve got Myers Briggs Type Indicator, romantic compatibility tests, career personality tests. And we’ve also got financial personality tests. The idea goes that if we understand how we feel and think about money, we’ll be better with managing and making it.
And we clearly need help.
According to a 2015 Nerdwallet study, the average U.S. household has about $15,762 in credit card debt and $130,922 in total debt. There are numerous reasons why Americans owe so much money, including an increase in the cost of living. But Payoff.com, a company that creates products and services to help Americans pay off their credit cards, created a quiz to examine the psychology of spending and why some people rack up more debt than others.
After taking the 30-second quiz, test takers are assigned to one of 10 personality traits.
While the quiz is fun, there are also helpful recommendations for how each personality should manage their money. For instance, the site recommends that “Storytellers” remain more conscious of spending when they’re out socially -- so try to resist splurging on the $120 bottle of wine when dining with your pals. It also suggests they resist overstretching their finances by lending money to friends and family.
The study surveyed more than 25,000 people over a 12-month period, and the questionnaire was designed by Dr. J. Galen Buckwalter, the brain behind eHarmony’s matching algorithm.
“Given our psychological makeup, it’s no wonder so many people are struggling with debt and financial anxiety,” said Buckwalter, Payoff’s Chief Science Officer. “The results of the Payoff Financial Personality Quiz provide a roadmap to help change financial behaviors and retrain the brain to think differently about money, debt and savings.”
Certain financial personalities were also more prevalent amongst certain age groups.
Baby boomers tended to identify as “Guardians” who are predictable and dedicated in their finances, while the millennial generation had a large number of “Sparks” whose emotional expressiveness has a big impact on how much they spend or save.
The concept of identifying a financial personality has become more mainstream, with several companies developing their own tests to help consumers learn more about their spending and saving habits. Barclays (BCS) developed an assessment that helps people understand how their emotions affect their investment decisions. And Moneytype, a personal finance site, developed a financial personality quiz designed to uncover how your values affect money management. Test takers can discover whether they’re a visionary, producer or independent -- and how that distinction affects their financial wellness.
What’s your financial personality? Take the quiz and share your results in the comments below.