Programs Tout Financial Literacy for All Ages

By Jackson, Ben | American Banker, April 5, 2002 | Go to article overview

Programs Tout Financial Literacy for All Ages


Jackson, Ben, American Banker


With consumer bankruptcy filings at an all-time high, financial literacy education has emerged in recent months as a top priority for bankers, lawmakers, regulators, and consumer groups.

Money management programs are popping up all over the country -- in schools and churches, on public television, and as part of job training programs. In Chicago, for example, a local community group and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. are both sponsoring financial education classes for adults, while the Federal Reserve Bank there is putting the finishing touches on plans for a financial literacy week to be held later this month.

In Cleveland, the Consumer Federation of America is partnering with local banks on a Cleveland Saves initiative to help consumers become better savers. The program has been so successful that the group recently rolled out a similar one in Kansas City, Mo. Other such programs, under the "America Saves" banner, are in the planning stage for other cities, including Charlotte, N.C., Indianapolis, Seattle, Philadelphia, and Phoenix.

And at the federal level, a provision in an education bill President Bush signed in January directs public funds to states that commit to improving students' financial literacy.

Bankers and consumer advocates say increases in consumer debt, a record-low savings rate, the explosion of financial services such as payday lending, and the option of online shopping have made financial education more important than ever.

David Fynn, a senior vice president at National City Corp. in Cleveland, compared the financial literacy effort to other public awareness campaigns. "Through education, appropriate product offerings, and other assistance, the objective is to change the national psyche related to savings -- abysmal at almost every income level -- in the same way as we have addressed 'No Smoking' campaigns and awareness of child safety."

The Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts reported in February that bankruptcies reached a record high last year. Consumer filings increased 19.2% last year, to 1.45 million, and since 1990 total bankruptcy filings, including those by businesses, have increased 90.6%.

Additionally, FDIC figures show that credit card chargeoffs in the fourth quarter of last year increased 25.8% from a year earlier, to $3.5 billion.

Maintaining that bad spending habits are acquired early in life, Americans for Consumer Education and Competition lobbied to get federal funding for financial education included in the No Child Left Behind Act. The law allocates more than $3 billion over the next six years for local education programs, including financial literacy.

"The economy is changing," said Mike Canning, the president of the Washington advocacy group. "The great availability of financial products and the ease with which young people can purchase things now make it necessary that they begin at an early age to learn how to manage money properly."

Two states, Wisconsin and Delaware, last year established task forces to study the idea of adding money management classes to high school curricula.

With credit defaults on the rise, Visa U.S.A. is at the forefront of the consumer education effort. It has declared April "Financial Literacy for Youth Month," and on Thursday it released a survey that says 92% of parents believe that practical money skills should be taught in schools.

But children are not the only ones who need to be taught how to budget and balance checkbooks. To help educate adults, the FDIC created Money Smart, a 10-module program designed to teach everything from how to open a bank account to credit management and borrowing for a home.

The nationwide program was preceded by local curricula like the one created by Financial Links for Low-Income People, a Chicago coalition of banks, community groups, and government agencies whose goal is to teach financial literacy classes and help people open bank accounts. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Programs Tout Financial Literacy for All Ages
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.