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Dollars and Sense: How Wise Are We With Money?

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The editors at Online Accounting Degrees decided to research the topic of:

Dollars and Sense: How Wise Are We With Money?

Nearly half of adults say their savings situation is their biggest concern; financial literacy of U.S. high school students is historically low; and only about a third of people have a long-term plan for savings and investment goals. All at a time when we're working longer hours for more money. Let's explore how wise Americans are - or aren't - when it comes to money.

Handling Household Finances

2 in 3


- Adults who don't prepare written or digital household budget

Those who prepare budgets

by educational level

- High school or less - 26%
- College grads - 38%
by political leanings

- Conservative - 35%
- Moderate - 33%
- Liberal - 29%
by household income

- $75,000+ - 39%
- $30,000-$75,000 - 30%
- >$30,000 - 32%
Spending less compared to previous year

- 2009 - 2010 - 2011 - 2012 - 2013
- 57% - 51% - 42% - 39% - 32%
Only 3 in 10

- Americans who keep a long-term savings plan
Adults who don't pay all of their bills on time

- 2012 - 2013
- 33% - 26%

Money Troubles Persist

43%


- U.S. adults who say not having enough in emergency savings is their biggest worry

How financial stress affects everyday life*:


- Sleeping less - 47%
- Less patience/seeing friends less often - 43%
- Eating more junk food/gaining weight - 31%
- Arguing more with spouse/significant other - 21%
- Getting sick more often - 17%
- * Among those who said money troubles had them very stressed out

Teens and Money

81%


- Teens who don't have a checking account

1 in 3


- Teens who have a summer job

Only 1 in 10


- Teens who are involved in helping pay household bills or manage household budget

52%


- Teens who say they want to learn how to manage their money

What they already know


- How to write a check - 60%
- How to shop for the best deal - 66%
- Difference between debit cards and credit cards - 60%
- How to budget - 57%
- How to establish good credit - 38%
- How to balance a checkbook - 35%
- How credit card interest and fees work - 31%
- What a credit score is - 31%
- How income taxes work - 22%
- What a 401(k) is - 17%

Interested in personal finance topics


- Budgeting - 80%
- Saving - 75%
- Checking accounts - 68%
- Investing - 67%
- 57% of parents with kids in high school or college give schools below-average grades in teaching responsible spending.
- 35% give schools an F in financial literacy.

States that require at least one high school course devoted to personal finance


- Utah
- Missouri
- Tennessee

SOURCES


- http://www.jumpstart.org/state-financial-education-requirements.html
- http://about.americanexpress.com/news/pr/2011/safespend.aspx
- http://www.aboutschwab.com/images/press/teensmoneyfactsheet.pdf
- http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/capital-ones-annual-back-to-school-shopping-survey-finds-current-economic-environment-school-budget-cuts-will-impact-back-to-school-spending-this-year-164414186.html
- http://www.aicpa.org/press/pressreleases/2013/pages/aicpa-survey-money-stress-taking-toll.aspx
- https://www.nfcc.org/newsroom/FinancialLiteracy/files2013/NFCC_NBPCA_2013%20FinancialLiteracy_survey_datasheet_key%20findings_032913.pdf
- http://www.gallup.com/poll/162872/one-three-americans-prepare-detailed-household-budget.aspx


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