The Washington Post featured research from the US Financial Diaries project in a recent review of smartphone apps and tools designed to help individuals manage their money and build savings. In particular, the Even app works to mitigate the effects of income volatility by banking pay that is above average and then using these savings to make up the difference when paychecks are low. The article notes:
For some households, the biggest challenge is not saving for the long term, but dealing with unsteady income — where pay fluctuates wildly from week to week or from month to month.
The average low-income household, for instance, experiences about three months a year when pay is at least 25 percent greater than average and three months when income is at least 25 percent below average, according to a report by the U.S. Financial Diaries, a project that followed the weekly cash flow of 235 families for a year.
The full article is available here. You can learn more about income volatility and its impact on USFD households in our issue brief on the subject.