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Study: Ohio 36th in Nation for Financial Security

Financial security eludes almost half of Ohio households, which often are one crisis away from plunging into poverty, according to a report from the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CED).

Many working-class families face the threat of tumbling into destitution because they lack sufficient savings to withstand a significant loss of income, and economic insecurity is getting worse for Ohioans.

The state lags the rest of the nation in some important economic measures, which contribute to many families living perilously close to financial catastrophe.

The CED, a D.C.-based nonprofit, last week released its 2014 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard, which evaluates and grades states based on sixty-six financial, employment, housing, education and health care measures.

Ohio scored poorly in many areas, and the state ranked thirty-sixth in the nation for financial security.

About 8.8% of Ohio households lack a bank account, compared to 8.2% of U.S. households. Ohioans had a higher bankruptcy rate (4.3 per 1,000 people) than the U.S. population (3.7 per 1,000 people). Almost 4% of borrowers in Ohio were delinquent, compared to 3.6% nationwide. People in Ohio are less likely than their U.S. peers to create new businesses, and the state’s home ownership rates are significant lower than the national average.

One of the report’s most grim revelations is that about 45% of Ohio households lack savings to survive for three months at the federal poverty level if they experience a loss of income. These households are “liquid asset poor,” meaning residents may own a home or car, but have no cash, or accounts that can be liquidated in case of crisis. The share of Ohio households in this group has increased 1.5% from last year’s report, and it’s up from less than 40% in 2006.

Most households below the poverty line of $23,550 for a family of four are liquid asset poor. But almost one in four households with annual incomes between $50,881 and $80,952 also have less than three months of savings to sustain at the poverty level ($5,887 for a family of four).

Via Norwalk Reflector.

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