October 6: Young people and financial services: weekly round up

1. Week ahead in the Commons

BBC; Mark D’Arcy, October 4

A look at the political agenda, as parliamentarians ease themselves back into the ways of Westminster after party conference season. One item on the agenda will be the Financial Services (Banking) bill

This is first of a scheduled three days of consideration by a committee of the whole House.

Much will turn on whether the regulation hawks from the Parliamentary Banking Commission are happy with the amendments the government put down on October 1st.

If these amendments are approved, it would mean that senior executives,  would be expected to know about what is going on in their bank, unless they can prove otherwise. It will be rather more difficult to plead ignorance, and moves to increase the strength of top-level governance.

2. SMEs, auto-enrolment and keeping young people engaged

Pensions Week; Cleo Pearson, October 1

Government figures show that just 8 per cent of young people in the UK’s largest businesses are choosing to opt out, compared with 9 per cent overall (PW 23/09/13).

However, Pensions Week is concerned that these numbers may not stay so low if small and medium-sized enterprises struggle to replicate the funding and resources behind their larger competitors’ accomplishments.

3. 5 Smart financial tips for young people

Times-Journal; October 3

Money management tips for young people. The article also notes that 70 percent of college students will graduate with student loan debt, which averages about $25,200, according to a recent Fidelity Investments survey.

4. Simple tips to easily climb out of debt

Tulsa World; Phil Mulkins, October 2

Following research that indebtedness can be bad for your health, this piece looks at simple ways to beat personal debt,

5. Cordray: Financial education should be on a par with history, government education

Bank Credit News; Alexandra Villarreal, September 30

CFPB Director Richard Cordray said at a hearing last week that financial education in the U.S. should be as fundamental as the education students receive in history and government.

“Within the framework of our republic, we have built the greatest system of economic liberty in the history of mankind,” Cordray said at the hearing on financial education held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “Yet it will only endure if we take the steps necessary to strengthen that system from the bottom up, starting with the individual. The financial services marketplace is constantly evolving in complex ways, and managing one’s finances is a lifelong endeavor.”

6. Study: children who save find greater financial success in life

Credit Unions online; Gina Ragusa, October4

A new report by the Assets and Education Initiative at University of Kansas’ School of Social Welfare showed that children who are actively involved in maintaining a savings account are more likely to be better investors later in life.

“We found they were twice as likely to continue to have savings accounts and four times more likely to have invested in stocks,” said study author, Terri Friedline, assistant professor of social welfare at KU. “We also found that if young people had a savings account as a child, they accumulated an average of about $2,000. Those who didn’t have a savings account earlier in life only accumulated about $100.”

7. Despite what you may have heard, Americans are learning to save their money

Deseret news; Devon Merling, October 2

Since the recession began, Americans on the whole have started engaging in more financially responsible behaviors. According to a recent study from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, overall household debt declined by $78 billion last quarter, putting it 12 percent lower than its highest levels in fall 2008 and at its lowest level since 2006. And among young people, savings have increased.

“A couple of silver linings have come out of the recession, even though it was very harrowing time to live through,” said John Sweeney, the executive vice president of Retirement & Investing Strategies at Fidelity Investments. “We saw some changes in behavior — reducing debt, increased saving for retirement — that tend to be lasting structural trends.”

While it is going to take a balance of borrowing and savings to create long-term financially stability, experts say there are positive signs that Americans have learned financial lessons from the recession.

8.  Financial advisers call for ‘money course’

The Florida Current; Bill Cotterell, September 27

With millions of young people staggering understudent loans and running up credit card debt with little knowledge of personal finance, a group of bankers and financial planners Friday called for the Florida Legislature to greatly increase money management training with a “money course” in public schools.

Geoff Simon of Tampa, chairman of the Florida Council on Economic Education, said the state created a half-semester course in “financial literacy” last session. He said his coalition wants to expand that to a full semester, with teachers trained to advise students about saving and debt throughout their school years.

9. Generation Y females: more financially savvy than males

Women’s Agenda; Jessica Gamble, September 18

Generation Y females are both financially-focused and property-savvy, with 87% listing owning a home and paying it off as a top lifetime goal. The Westpac Home Ownership Report reveals that only 79% of men stated the same thing.

More Generation Y women are prioritising owning a home at a young age ahead of having children and getting married with 49% listing home ownership as their number one priority, compared to 5% listing getting married and 14% listing having children as their ultimate goal.

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