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Improved Financial Literacy Will Help Improve Financial Well-Being

Tim Pawlenty 214x300 Improved Financial Literacy Will Help Improve Financial Well BeingBy Tim Pawlenty, President/CEO of Financial Services Roundtable.

Americans are increasingly responsible for their own financial security after retirement. Fixed payout pensions have largely given way to 401(k)s.  This transition brings new opportunities and challenges.  It also is another reason why financial literacy and education is more important than ever.

Studies show many American workers are not well-prepared to manage their finances. One study found nearly half of the older workers interviewed didn’t understand the type of pension or retirement plan they had and a large majority knew little about basic rules relating to Social Security benefits.[1]

The need to better understand personal finances doesn’t just begin as workers approach retirement. Financial skills matter throughout life as people consider questions such as the affordability of owning a home or how to best prepare for funding their children’s education.  Financial literacy is also needed to avoid financial exploitation.

It is often said that the first step towards solving a problem is admitting the problem exists.  Americans know we need to improve financial literacy. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling Financial Literacy Survey recently revealed that 41 percent of adults gave themselves a grade of C, D or F on their knowledge of personal finance and 61 percent admitted to not having a budget.[2]

Financial literacy is one of the highest priorities for the Financial Services Roundtable and our member companies. Making progress is a shared responsibility of the private sector, government, and consumers.

FSR and our member companies work to provide financial literacy resources and support to help educate and inform consumers.

Examples of such efforts include Bank of America partnering with the nonprofit Khan Academy to offer “Better Money Habits,” an online resource that offers videos on financial literacy topics such as understanding credit, home buying, saving and budgeting. U.S. Bank has created a “Credit Wellness Center” that helps consumers take control of their credit score by highlighting  tips about how to protect and maintain good credit scores. And State Farm Insurance’s “Make It Possible Program” hosts “A Slice of L.I.F.E.™” financial education workshops for underserved young adults, covering topics including the home buying process, the importance of credit, buying a car and establishing financial goals. More information efforts to improve financial literacy by FSR member companies is available at our Corporate Social Responsibility website, or by downloading a copy of FSR’s 2014 Impact Report.

Financial literacy is an important part of avoiding financial mistakes and planning for a strong, secure financial future. FSR and our member companies continue to raise awareness and support for enhanced financial literacy during Financial Literacy Month and every month.

[1]Source:Lusardi, Annamaria (2007): Household saving behavior: The role of literacy, information and financial education programs, CFS Working Paper, No. 2007/28.



POSTED: April 14, 2015 | BY: Daniel Thompson | TAGS: , , , , , , , , ,

Meaningful Economics* Competition – Hands on Learning for Delaware Students

If you thought Keurigs have made paper coffee filters a thing of the past, think again. From filtration systems and custom hand-held fans to lampshades and taco holders, students participating in this year’s Meaningful Economics (ME*) Competition came up with creative new uses for Melitta Bentz’s 106-year old patented product.

ME Comp Meaningful Economics* Competition – Hands on Learning for Delaware Students

A group of students brainstorm at this year’s ME* Competition.

The ME* Competition, produced by the University of Delaware’s Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship with support from the Delaware CEE, was held recently in May, inviting Delaware elementary students to design products or services which solved an economic problem—this year’s being to help producers clear leftover inventories in a post-Keurig world.

Participating teams gave their designs catchy names, determined target markets, priced products, and planned modes of distribution. The resulting plans were then pitched to a panel of judges.

Teams were also judged in written test and production activity rounds. For the latter, students assembled a card game, matching idioms related to the use of money with their meanings. Students cut and pasted while learning about team management and job specialization, ultimately being judged by the quality and quantity of their output.

This year marked the ME* Competition’s 28th run, involving 550 students throughout Delaware. It is produced annually in partnership with Bank of America and Discover with the help of judges from Capital One and JPMorgan Chase.

POSTED: June 11, 2014 | BY: Annamarie Cerreta | TAGS: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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