Most New Zealanders are confident about their ability to manage money, even though a quarter have no cash savings.
A Financial Wellbeing Survey of 1500 people commissioned by ANZ Bank has found a quarter of New Zealanders have no financial worries, 40 percent are doing okay, but another quarter are just getting by and 13 percent are struggling.
Financial wellbeing is more about feelings and expectations than a current or future financial situation, which means some people with a good income and wealth don't necessarily feel secure.
ANZ Managing Director Retail & Business Banking Antonia Watson said savings was one of the biggest factors in gauging how people felt about their financial well being.
"There's also a big divide in financial wellbeing between home owners and renters," she said.
"Renters are the most likely to rarely or never save and those who own their homes are the most confident in all aspects of their finances."
She said understanding what financial wellbeing meant was crucial to helping people achieve it.
"Learning the basics at a young age is important and financial education needs to be integrated into our curriculum."
Two-thirds of people were confident in their day-to-day financial management, but less than half - just 44 percent - felt on top of things.
Twenty-one percent found themselves often unable to pay bills at the final reminder.
A quarter of single parents said they would need to borrow cash inside a week if their income dropped by a third.
Meanwhile, seniors were the most likely to have cash tucked away, with two thirds having money saved for a rainy day.
The research was conducted in December last year.