“Young people need to understand that the financial decisions they make today can impact the rest of their lives,” said Johns. “At Wells Fargo, we want to equip all our young people with the tools they need to succeed financially. We hope that these students develop life-long, positive financial habits as a result of what they learned on Wednesday.”
“I am so grateful that Wells Fargo took the time to invest in the future of our students by educating them on the importance of financial responsibility,” said Lisa Smith, business teacher and Future Business Leaders of America adviser for Sonoraville High School.
Customized for various age groups from children to adults, Wells Fargo’s Hands on Banking® program is fun, interactive and teaches fundamental money management basics that are crucial to achieving financial success.
According to a 2011 Wells Fargo study, customers who completed online financial education programs demonstrated a 51.2 percent improvement in bankruptcy rates compared to customers who did not. Also, the increase in FICO scores for the customers who completed the program was 240 percent better than the increase for those who did not participate.
Considering that students accrue an average of $4,100 in credit card debt and more than $25,000 in student loan debt by the time they graduate from college (FinAid.org and Institute for College Access and Success), it’s more important than ever for young people to learn the basics of budgeting, saving and managing credit.
The National Endowment for Financial Education reports that teenagers spend more than $172 billion per year - double the amount ten years earlier. Yet, according to a 2011 study, only 32 percent of 18-year-olds know how credit card interest and fees work (Charles Schwab). That’s compared to 43 percent in 2007.
Teach Children to Save Day is an annual, national campaign that was created 16 years ago by the American Bankers Association Education Foundation.