Financial Literacy Fail: Americans Seriously Lack Money Skills

Financial Literacy Fail: Americans Seriously Lack Money Skills

An unsettling new survey from RetailMeNot and The Omnibus Co. revealed that not only are Americans clueless about their finances, they’re also the first ones to admit it.

Almost half of people surveyed confessed that they lack knowledge, understanding and confidence about their money. The good news is that 52% could live for more than a month on what they have in their savings accounts. But a whopping 78% are concerned that they won’t be able to retire when they’d hoped, nor be able to live the lifestyle they’d like to in retirement.

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One in four respondents lacked even the most basic information about their money, not having the slightest idea of how much money they have in their savings accounts.

Psychologist and money coach Dr. Barbara Nusbaum told financial security company Genworth, which did its own financial literacy research, that it’s not the lack of access to information that is keeping Americans ignorant about money. Rather, it’s a feeling of being overwhelmed by the complexity of financial products and the time it would take to understand them.

However, Genworth's survey produced some hopeful numbers revealing that people realize ignorance is not bliss: 61% of men and 34% of women are actively pursuing education about personal finance.

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