Financial Literacy Tanks With the Economy

November 28, 2012 — 3 Comments

In a weak, recovering economy and at a time when information is more easily available than ever before, it seems logical that households – particularly lower-income households, would have improved their financial literacy.  Unfortunately, according to polls conducted by the National Finance Center and other research groups cited below, the problem is worse than it was last year.

There is plenty of blame to pass around for the shock of the 2007-09 financial crisis, but one party includes borrowers who took advantage of historically low financing rates without having the cash reserves necessary to withstand market fluctuations.  As one panelist at the 2012 Financial Literacy and Education Summit hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago put it, “Individuals without emergency savings lack a buffer against unexpected financial shocks, threatening their personal financial stability, as well as decreasing [the] stability of the economy as a whole.”

In America, the financial literacy report card isn’t pretty.  The U.S. ranked next to last in international surveys; most kids learn money management skills from their parents, and most parents aren’t very good at managing their money.

While some states quarrel over whether or not to add creationism into their curriculum, only 13 states require personal finance courses.  See the full results in the infographic below:

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3 responses to Financial Literacy Tanks With the Economy

  1. 

    Hi Niall,Simple, relevant, punengt and a play on a well-known phrase. Words and picture together in this way create a more compelling message Subtle’ is good but cultural and linguistic variations make it hard to produce a message that fits’ and there is always the danger that someone might find black humour (which I find wonderfully effective) to be offensive.I do not understand modern art and yet I want to know what it is that gets to someone’ Above all I would like to know what constitutes good art my gut reaction is that good’ is a label given by people who are part of the scene and others content to be part of the deception. My heart sinks when I see a photographic or art work accompanied by 1000+ words of explanation. To go back to an earlier post the language employed is pretentious and, worse still, meaningless. I have seen (and heard recently) people wax lyrical about the quantum relevance’ of their work, molecular interplay lalla,lah lah lah di di dum: in effect you take three columns of polysyllabic words combine any one of column 1 with a word in 2 and another in 3 et voila a piece of meaningless jargon over which the cognoscenti will nod and stroke their beards (and that is just the females) in deep and meaningful complicity. Make it complicated and it seems profound (except to we cynics) keep it simple and you have what is here: a message.Bravo raggazzo!Your compatriot in the fight!Paul

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