Research Outline

The Underbanked - Demographic Analysis (US)


To provide a demographic analysis of underbanked adults in the United States.

Early Findings

The underbanked population uses some elements of traditional banking, such as checking and savings accounts, but primarily relies on cash and paper checks to conduct most transactions.
Below are some of our findings:


  • The majority of underbanked Americans skew towards adults with little or no college education. 24.3 percent of underbanked adults do not possess a high school diploma. For 20.3 percent of such individuals, a high school diploma is their highest qualification. 20.8 percent possess some college education, while 14.4 percent possess a college degree.


  • According to the FDIC, 29.3 percent of individuals between the ages of 15-24 are believed to be underbanked. Similarly, 23.1 percent of individuals between the ages of 25-34; 19.3 percent of individuals between the ages of 45-54; and 17.8 percent of individuals between the ages of 55-64 all fall into the underbanked category.


  • The underbanked population in the U.S. is majorly made up of Black Americans and Hispanics. 30.4 percent of Black Americans and 28.9 percent of Hispanics are believed to be underbanked. On the other hand, 17.5 percent of Asians, and 14.1 percent of White Americans are also believed to fall into this category.

Household Income

  • In the U.S., as with the unbanked population, the majority of the underbanked population skew towards poorer households. 20.9 percent of households that fall into this category earn less than $15,000 per annum. 22.4 percent of underbanked households earn between $15,000 - $30,000 per annum, while 19.7 percent earn between $50,000 - $75,000 per annum.


  • Similarly to the unbanked population, there's no gap between male and female ownership of banking accounts in the US. This means that there is an equal proportion of male to female underbanked adults in the United States.


  • A significant proportion of underbanked individuals reside in the south-eastern and south-western regions of the U.S. The states with the highest proportion of underbanked adults include Nevada, Texas, Georgia, and Alabama.