Economic security sounds like a feeling. You may feel secure, for example, if you have zero debt and a sizable chunk of cash in the bank. But there’s a more formal definition.
According to a recent report from the nonprofit Institute for Women’s Policy Research in Washington, D.C.:
“To experience economic security, working adults must have enough income to meet their basic monthly expenses — such as housing, food, transportation, and child-care expenses — and save for emergencies and retirement.”
Using national and state data, the institute determined that, in the U.S., only 67 percent of working adults aged 19-64 are economically secure.
We used data from the report to rank the states, starting with ones where economic security is least common. Our numbers are for a family of four — two working parents, an infant and a preschooler — who have no workplace benefits, such as employer-sponsored health insurance or a retirement plan.