Teens Experiencing Layoffs, Reduced Hours, Job Scarcity and Forced Frugality According to New Junior Achievement/Allstate Foundation Poll

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Teens also feeling anxious about economy and going out less often

The Allstate Foundation's support for this kind of education could not be better timed.

Fourteen percent of U.S. teens 15-17 years-old report the need to contribute financially to the family budget, one-third of all teens report less job availability, 53 percent of teens surveyed say they're choosing activities that cost less money and more than 50 percent say they talk about the economy with their friends, according a new poll released today by Junior Achievement and The Allstate Foundation.

Now in its tenth year, the Junior Achievement/Allstate Foundation Teen Personal Finance Poll is an annual, financial IQ pulse check for U.S. teens.

"The results of this poll demonstrate a strong need for increased financial literacy--teens are indicating feelings of uncertainty and anxiety about the economy and its effect on their lives", said Jack E. Kosakowski, president of Junior Achievement USA. "Possessing and using sound money management skills can help young people feel more in control of their futures. Regardless of the state of the economy, Junior Achievement programs teach students how to budget, save, invest and use credit wisely; we're proud to partner with The Allstate Foundation to increase financial literacy for future generations."

"The survey results underscore the importance of teaching young people money management skills as early in life as possible," said Vicky Dinges, assistant vice president for public social responsibility at Allstate. "The Allstate Foundation's support for this kind of education could not be better timed."

Other survey results include:

  • One third of teens (33 percent) surveyed said there seem to be fewer jobs available.
  • 18 percent of 15 -17 year olds polled said they have lost a job due the economy.
  • Nearly three-in-ten teens (29 percent) said that the economy is causing them anxiety.
  • More than three-quarters (77 percent) of the teens polled say that their parents are talking about the economy more than they used to.
  • Nearly half (49 percent) said their parents had discussed family finances with them as a result of the economy.
  • 15 percent of teens said they have reduced extracurricular activities as a result of the economy.

Junior Achievement and The Allstate Foundation have created a financial literacy program for middle grades students, JA Economics for Success™, which teaches young people money management skills--such as budgeting and understanding the cost of credit--using hands-on, age-appropriate lessons. The program impacts 268,000 students around the world annually.

In addition to providing JA Economics for Success, Junior Achievement and The Allstate Foundation have partnered to create personal finance teaching tools that parents can use to talk to their children about the importance of learning and using sound money management skills. The twelve lessons are downloadable free of charge at http://www.ja.org/programs/programs_save_usa_materials_parents.shtml and teach age-appropriate concepts around budgeting, saving, spending and investing.

The 2009 Teens and Personal Finance poll was conducted by Opinion Research Corporation the week of February 23, 2009, and surveyed 1,000 U.S. teens ages 12-17 via telephone. Its margin of error is +/- 3.2 percent.

About Junior Achievement® (JA)
Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy. Through a dedicated volunteer network, Junior Achievement provides in-school and after-school programs for students which focus on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. Today, 137 individual area operations reach more than four million students in the United States, with an additional five million students served by operations in 123 other countries worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.ja.org.

The Allstate Foundation                                                                                                
Established in 1952, The Allstate Foundation is an independent, charitable organization made possible by subsidiaries of The Allstate Corporation. The Allstate Foundation partners with non-profit organizations on community initiatives that promote "safe and vital communities," "tolerance, inclusion, and diversity" and "economic empowerment." Teen driving and empowering victims of domestic violence have been major initiatives for the Foundation since 2005. For more information visit http://www.ProtectTeenDrivers.com or http://www.clicktoempower.com.

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