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Reducing the effects of stress on financial decisions

Case Study


Money is one of the biggest source of stress, with 58% of Americans feeling like finances control their life and 68% worrying that they won’t have enough savings to retire.  Yet stress about money can itself fuel poor financial behaviors, such as impulsive spending and failure to budget. This vicious circle has negative consequences for consumers and financial institutions alike.

While the evidence is clear that stress is harmful to financial wellbeing, reducing stress is notoriously difficult.

The Challenge

The Decision Lab was approached by Capital One, one of the largest consumer banks in America, to develop and communicate practical, evidence-based strategies to help customers struggling with financial stress. 

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