July 20, 2017

Fintech Apps Bring Stability to Stressed Families

Written by David Wessel

This article originally appeared on The Wall Street Journal.

New apps help people save more money, pay bills and cope with fluctuations in income

At a time of volatile household incomes and widespread economic insecurity, the latest innovations in financial technology may help bring some peace of mind and a little stability to financially stressed American families.

The past few years have seen a proliferation of apps designed to help families—not rich people looking to allocate 401(k) retirement accounts, but the larger number struggling to make it from paycheck to paycheck, coping with the uncertainty of everyday life and trying to keep the promises they made to themselves to save.

“In the U.S. we don’t really have an access-to-banking problem,” says Jennifer Tescher, president of the Center for Financial Services Innovation, a nonprofit that aims to help the industry better serve low- and moderate-income consumers. After all, 93% of U.S. households have bank accounts, according to the latest Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. data. “The bigger issue is: Can we use technology to help people better manage their financial lives?”

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