USA Today ran a front page story recently on the impact of financial illiteracy. It raises the issue of how not learning money lessons before you head out to the workplace can cause additional stress and challenges, especially in a down economy. A recent PNC financial survey finds that young adults, around age 20+, have roughly $45,000 in debt, and unemployment for 18-24 year olds stands at 12.4%, above the national average of 8.2%.  Sobering stats.

If you have someone in your life heading into this tough climate, start helping them now to network their way into a job.  Show them how to use the connections in their lives and yours to get employed.  If you have a child in your life that is even younger, years from this battleground, start teaching them about money now so they can avoid adding crippling debt to their list of challenges as they launch into the adult world after college.

I know, it sounds odd to many to reach and teach kids as young as first grade about the choices they have for money, how to set goals for those choices and ultimately use these skills to practice delayed gratification. But trust me, the child that has years to practice this kind of “stop-think and then choose” skill when it comes to money will thrive as a young adult – no matter how tough the circumstances that life presents upon graduation.

Here’s the article from USA Today.  I’d love to hear what you think, too. So please comment below or email me at

USA Today: Millennials struggle with financial literacy

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Written by Susan Beacham
Susan Beacham founded Money Savvy Generation in 1999 after almost two decades in private banking and investment management complemented by considerable time teaching at the elementary level.

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