Financial Literacy, Stability, and Security as Understood by Male Saudi University Students

  •  Amani K. Hamdan Alghamdi    
  •  Sue L. T. McGregor    
  •  Wai Si El-Hassan    


This paper recounts an inaugural study of male Saudi university students’ understandings of financial literacy, financial stability, and financial security and how they plan to achieve these. Using convenience sampling, 79 male respondents (53% response rate) from an Eastern Province university completed a six-question open-ended email instrument. Data collected in November 2020 were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results showed that while their understanding of what constitutes financial literacy was solid enough (with some gaps), their notion of how to ensure financial stability and security was in question. They made no mention of retirement, taxation, or estate planning and limited insurance to medical. Despite self-rating themselves as having good (47%) or average (32%) financial literacy, results suggest an imbalanced personal financial system, which bodes ill for future financial resilience, stability, and security. Respondents placed an inordinate weight on the risky ventures of investing (79%) and entrepreneurship (49%) to make a living and to use for retirement while concurrently not valuing goal setting, budgeting, or funding emergencies. Virtually all (99%) respondents said they planned to learn more about financial literacy, and they tendered an array of ideas for how the university could make this happen.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.