Why Aren’t We Taught Personal Finance in School?
John McDermott
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Students exposed to economic and financial education are more likely to display positive financial behaviors. For example,
Students exposed to mandated personal finance education exhibit meaningful improvements in credit outcomes. Three years following the implementation of mandates in Georgia, Idaho, and Texas, severe delinquency rates for those students receiving the education declined by 2% in Georgia, 2% in Idaho, and 6% in Texas, and credit scores increased by 2%, 3%, and 5% respectively.
State financial curriculum mandates elevate the rates at which individuals save and accumulate wealth during their adult lives. Net-worth-to-earnings ratios of those exposed to mandates are more than 9 percentage points higher than the ratios of those who were not exposed.
Students who have taken a class in personal finance are more likely to engage in financially responsible behaviors such as saving, budgeting, and investing: 93% of those who have taken a class save money vs. 84% of those who have not; 60% of those who have taken a class have a budget vs. 46% of those who have not; 32% of those who have taken a class have invested money vs. 17 % of those who have not.

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