Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Best Protection: Financial Literacy

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Best Protection: Financial Literacy

Article excerpt

My Number One goal this year is to improve the image of the banking industry. We're determined to make a difference in the way our customers see us, the way the media see us and the way policymakers see us.

You can do something for our image, for the nation's children, and for the economy when you participate in the ABA Education Foundation's "Teach Children to Save Day" on April 12.

This is the 15th anniversary of Teach Children to Save. During that time, nearly 100,000 bankers have reached 4.1 million young people and taught them the basics of saving for the future. This is the only national effort to teach financial literacy to young people powered exclusively by bankers. We can be very proud of what we're doing, and you should be very proud of your role in this effort.

I've always believed that financial literacy is the best consumer protection. It starts with savings. And as every banker knows, the earlier you start saving, the better.

We want to start young people on the path to saving. It's good for them because it creates good financial habits and helps prevent bad financial habits. It's good for our country. And it's good for our industry.

When we teach children to save we're promoting a lifetime habit. You and I know that the culture of saving has its own rewards. For example, those who have a college savings account are seven times more likely to attend college than those without such an account, regardless of other factors in their lives. And a college education is the key to higher earnings. …

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