April is Financial Literacy Month in the United States. This yearly acknowledgement of the importance of financial literacy was made possible by Senator Akaka (D-Hawaii) through
Senate Resolution 316, passed without amendment on March 9, 2004. This blog post is a small (spark) tribute to Financial Literacy Month. Let’s begin with the foundations. First question up: what is financial literacy?
What is financial literacy?
The U.S. News article “Why Most High Schoolers Don't Know How to Manage Their Money,” suggests the within the United States, most teens go into adulthood without a solid foundation for how to manage their money. Most teens do not learn about personal finance as part of most high school curriculums; and most parents do not feel a level of comfort on the topic to teach their teens. What this leaves us is that most people do not have an adequate financial know-how to make important decisions: taking a new job, buying a home, going back to school On a grander scale, our economy, innovation, and social change depends on the success of these key decisions. The question then becomes: what can we do today to begin filling this knowledge gap?
Prior to the end of papers savings bonds, family and friends gave savings bonds as gifts for graduations, weddings, and other life milestones. In the Chicago Tribune article “Bye bye, paper savings bonds,” Ron Grossman suggests how the elimination of paper savings bond is also a loss of a tangible tool to teach children finance and delayed gratification. Few people in Generation Z will ever remember the days of the paper savings bonds, but that reality does not stop parents’ desire to teach their children the power of investing in their own futures.
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