Number of Close Friends
The number of close friends a person has is another measure of social capital, since outside of the immediate family, close friends are among the most likely individuals to be drawn on when someone needs help. Some 43 percent of respondents say they have more than five close friends, with another 22 percent saying they have four or five. More people said they had two or three close friends (26 percent) than four or five, a switch from last year.
Young adults are least likely to say they have more than five close friends, and older adults the most likely. There is a strong correlation between educational attainment and the proportion of residents who have more than five close friends. The correlation with income is also strong, except for those in the highest income group. Whites are one-and-a-half times as likely as blacks to say they have more than five close friends and blacks are more than twice as likely as whites to say they have no close friends. More than 10 percent of those with less than a high school degree or those who are homemakers say they have no close friends.