This October is the first-ever National Economic Education Month! Learn how to celebrate

Panel Discussion

Council for Economic Education Promotes Bipartisan Financial Literacy Initiative at Democratic National Convention

This year, the Council for Economic Education (CEE) made its debut appearance at one of the nation’s largest political forums, the Democratic National Convention (DNC).  CEE invited two distinguished groups of panelists to both the DNC and Republican National Convention (RNC) to discuss a single topic: “Financial Literacy: Is Your State Part of the Problem—or the Solution?” but the untimely arrival of Hurricane Isaac led to a cancellation of the RNC event.   Sponsored by Wells Fargo in conjunction with Fidelity and State Farm, and hosted alongside local affiliate North Carolina Council on Economic Education (NCCEE), the DNC event went on as scheduled, advancing a bipartisan initiative to improve financial literacy education. Read more…

POSTED: September 6, 2012 | BY: admin | TAGS: , , , , ,

A Special Thank You to Chairman Bernanke for Your Teacher Town Hall

Dear Chairman Bernanke,

Thank you for spending time today with our country’s greatest asset – educators – who ensure the next generation of our children are prepared for the future.

Today’s ‘Conversation with the Chairman: A Teacher Town Hall Meeting’ was an important point of outreach to K-12 educators and organizations who are working each day to improve economics and financial literacy across the country. The Council for Economic Education is especially pleased to know that you believe in supporting educators who teach these life skills to our students, and that you recognize our dedication to instilling in young people the fourth “R”—a real-world understanding of economics and personal finance.

Thank you for bringing attention to the CEE’s work on the National Standards for Personal Finance, which will be released later this year. We are proud to work closely with experts from the Federal Reserve system on the development of these standards. It is an important project that will assist teachers in providing effective education to their students, and help school districts to implement a solid curriculum plan around personal finance.

We look forward to your continued support of financial literacy and economic education as we advance our delivery of educator resources, professional development and programs for K-12 educators.

Nan J. Morrison
President & CEO
Council for Economic Education

POSTED: August 7, 2012 | BY: nan | TAGS: , , , , , ,

Financial Illiteracy: Educated Women Too?

Industry Leaders Discuss the Gender Gap in Financial Education

This week, the Council for Economic Education welcomed Ann F. Kaplan, Dr. Annamaria Lusardi and Dr. Mahnaz Mahdavi to our national headquarters to address an important, yet rarely discussed topic: that even highly educated women have low levels of financial literacy.

Speaking before an audience of industry leaders from the financial, philanthropic, legal and non-profit sectors, rising freshmen Heather Pepper and Naomi Gonzalez opened the program by sharing their personal experiences and the first-hand benefits of the financial curriculum they experienced in high school. Then, following opening remarks from CEE’s CEO and President Nan J. Morrison,  the trio of distinguished panelists offered their insights into the issue at hand.

Ms. Kaplan, partner at Circle Wealth Management, dispelled the false yet persistent myth that women don’t invest because they aren’t good at math.  But she also spoke to the need for greater financial education for women, even for those who work in finance.  To paraphrase Ms. Kaplan, understanding complex derivatives doesn’t equip you with the personal finance lessons you need to plan for retirement.

Dr. Lusardi, Professor of Financial Literacy at The George Washington School of Business, noted that a sharp difference exists between men’s and women’s financial knowledge not just here in the United States, but across the globe.  According to Dr. Lusardi, financial literacy is a skill one needs for everything from voting to making the decision to invest in education.  Equipping young women with that knowledge is a crucial way to “make a difference in someone’s life.”

Dr. Mahdavi, Professor of Economics at Smith College, presented a comprehensive study she conducted on the state of financial literacy of educated women based on detailed survey responses from almost 4,400 Smith alumni. One of the most startling findings was the dearth of financial knowledge among women in their 20’s and 30’s: out of the six basic finance questions they were asked, these age groups correctly answered only 35% and 44% respectively. And though literacy tends to increase with age, peaking in the 60’s with a 57% correct response rate, even then it falls short of where it needs to be.

On a positive note, data suggests that a rigorous financial education at an early age could be a way to reverse the trend.  As Ms. Morrison concluded, “if we get to the problem early… [students] can build life along their values by having the tools and knowledge to make the best decisions for them and their communities.

The event was graciously funded by Gerstein Fisher, a financial management firm based in New York City.

L-R: Mahnaz Mahdavi, Nan J. Morrison, Dr. Annamaria Lusardi, Ann Kaplan

POSTED: June 21, 2012 | BY: admin | TAGS: , , , ,