Americans in the Dark about the Basics of Investing

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RoadFish.com men’s lifestyle and finance magazine commends about a recent article reporting that Americans are generally uneducated when it comes to the fundamentals of investing options, terms, and lingo

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RoadFish.com men’s lifestyle and finance magazine today issued their statement regarding a recent Wall Street Journal article which reported that Americans could stand to brush up on their knowledge about investments, since a survey revealed that many consumers are largely in the dark about definitions, basic terms, and concepts behind investments. RoadFish.com’s stance on this may aid consumers by shining a light on a weakness that, if strengthened, could bring about financially prosperity for investors.

Andrea Coombes of the Wall Street Journal recently reported that the Investor Education Foundation of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) supplied a survey three years ago to 28,000 consumers to test Americans’ knowledge when it came to investments, and many respondents admitted to not knowing several of the answers. For the question, “True or false: Buying a single company’s stock usually provides a safer return than a stock mutual fund,” 53% got the answer correct, 6% got the answer wrong, and another 40% responded that they had no idea. Another question on the survey asked, “If interest rates rise, what will typically happen to bond prices?” 28% of survey-takers got the question right, 37% did not know, and 33% answered incorrectly.

RoadFish.com believes that it’s time for American consumers to brush up on their knowledge about investments. RoadFish.com’s Senior staff writer is quoted as saying, “It seems to me that there is a whole world of financial potential that’s being untapped right now due to a lack of knowledge. Perhaps people think that having a savings account with growing interest is a worthy enough investment, but it’s because they don’t know about other opportunities to earn money elsewhere, such as lucrative real estate investment strategies. It’s shocking to me that 67% of respondents to the FINRA survey stated they believed that they possessed high financial knowledge; because you’d be shocked how many people I know who don’t even understand how the number on their credit score is tallied. I think that Americans in general could use a crash course in personal finance terms as well as other investment and banking concepts.”

The above-mentioned article reported that a recent financial literacy report published by the Securities and Exchange Commission is quoted saying that “U.S. retail investors lack basic financial literacy,” as well as claiming that they “have a weak grasp of elementary financial concepts.” The article also states that one of the reasons that Americans do not possess a strong understanding of finances is due in part to the fact that finances are very rarely focused on in school. Reportedly there are 46 states whose standards include education about personal finance, but only 36 states actually have laws that enforce the standards to be carried out. Of those 36, just 13 states actually uphold the requirement stating that students must take a course on personal finance in high school.

RoadFish.com believes that the key to financial literacy is starting education at a young age. RoadFish.com’s Senior staff writer is quoted as saying, “Parents need to instill a solid understanding of personal finances in their kids starting when they’re young, so that they can ideally the learn the concepts, tactics and basics before they’re out of the house and on their own. The trouble with this is that if the parents are not very well educated on the topic, they don’t have much to pass down to their children. I believe that Americans as a whole could use a crash course in finance, and not just regarding investments. Simple terms and definitions, if not cleared up, can lead to confusion and a deep-seeded misunderstanding for entire concepts.”

Coombes included a quote from Michael Finke, who is a professor of personal finance planning at Texas Tech University, stating, “It’s a crime that financial literacy is not taught in high schools. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to live well in the U.S. without a basic level of financial knowledge. We’re increasingly tasked with the responsibility of funding our own retirement, consumer financial products have also become more complex, and we increasingly see evidence that corporations view the exploitation of naïve consumers as a source of profit within the financial-services industry.” Professor Finke is also reportedly the co-developer of the Financial Literacy Assessment Test, a segment in Ohio State University’s Consumer Finance Monthly Survey.

About RoadFish.com

RoadFish.com men’s lifestyle and finance magazine is a well-liked online men’s magazine that features articles about travel, lifestyle, men’s fashion, finance, and dating advice. RoadFish.com’s readers are generally men who are in their 30’s and 40’s, many of which have already achieved some major life goals and are striving toward the next big accomplishment. RoadFish.com men’s lifestyle and finance magazine typically runs stories on men’s luxury items, vacation ideas, hot chicks, and financial advice for parents and college students alike. RoadFish.com is owned and operated by Purpose Inc.

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David Klein
Purpose Inc.
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