Financial Literacy Month has been quietly creeping into Banqer's social feeds during April as people from around the world post great financial content to support and promote financial literacy. The idea was initiated in North America, and unfortunately it falls mostly in New Zealand's school holidays. Banqer still took the chance to reflect on some of the principles brought up and post relevant content. As we draw to a close of this month, here are some of our thoughts:
What actually is financial literacy? Being able to read a financial textbook without falling asleep? Financial Literacy, according to Investopedia, is 'The possession of knowledge and understanding of financial matters.' In NZ, a recent study suggested we are 11th in the world as 61% of us would pass a basic financial literacy test.
This is encouraging news, but it becomes a little less fantastic when compared with our $3.7 Billion of credit card debt. That's significant in a country of 4.6 million people! What is driving this disparity between knowledge and action?
Here in NZ The CFFC and majority of those in financial education value capability over literacy alone. It's a radical shift from simply teaching the right things, to giving people the opportunity to enact the right behaviours and habits from a young age. Doing is more important than just learning. It's the premise Banqer is built on. It can be compared to instiling the knowledge about healthy eating with our children, only then to find out they're stopping in at the dairy for a fizzy drink everyday on their way to school. It's not enough to simply teach, we need to collectively practice these good habits, and avoid the bad ones.
The closest comparison to Financial Literacy Month in New Zealand is Money Week. It's awesome, but we're left wondering, is a week enough? Should we, could we have a month to highlight finances? 'Money Month' has a nice ring to it, don't you think?
We’d love to hear what you think about our Money Month idea. Share your thoughts on the Community Board.
Insights from Cam Richardson (Financial Ponderer, Money Month Advocate, and Banqer Team Member)