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The Growing Importance of Financial Literacy Month

Fin lit 2Every second, America’s trillion dollar student loan debt grows by nearly $3,000. This debt that people begin to carry at an early age often leads to more uninformed financial decisions, such as taking on credit card debt and other loans they can’t afford. Typically, this occurs because of limited access to financial education tools and resources. This alone points to the urgent need for financial literacy in this country.

The AICPA and state CPA societies across the country are leading the effort to address this growing problem through new programs and initiatives. April is Financial Literacy Month, and we continue to be diligent in spreading the important message of financial literacy to millions of Americans. Through the AICPA’s flagship 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy program, the national volunteer effort of CPAs to help all Americans understand their personal finances through every life stage, we have combined grassroots advocacy with free public resources and tools for CPAs to educate Americans of all ages. Additionally, Feed the Pig, the AICPA’s award-winning public service campaign with the Ad Council, has provided tools and resources aimed specifically at Americans aged 25-34, an age group that is making major life decisions, often with little financial experience or guidance.

This year, our Feed the Pig program celebrates its 10th Anniversary. A recent survey conducted by the AICPA and the Ad Council illustrates the success of our endeavors, saying that one in three millennials ranked saving as their top priority. Making these young adults aware of our free resources, such as the student loan calculator, Benjamin Bankes’ weekly savings tips, and our humorous PSAs, is helping to set them up for financial success—and ultimately bettering their futures for not only themselves but also for their families.  

The AICPA is  dedicated to bringing financial literacy to Americans through new technology and platforms, such as our online financial literacy version of Bank On It®, and social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and IFTTT. It continues to be apparent that people, regardless of their age, crave information in new and innovative ways—and that is  what our programs aim to do in 2016 and beyond. Additionally, this month we plan to broaden the scope of our resources to include 360 “En Español” to address the needs and questions of Spanish speakers. 

The profession has consistently led efforts to bring innovative solutions to address the growing importance of financial literacy to all consumers for more than ten years, and we hope you’ll join us in celebrating Financial Literacy Month over the next couple of weeks.  

The AICPA’s Consumer Education Team: Cheryl Reynolds, Vice President – Communications, Advertising and Brand Management; Daniel Bond, MSM, CAE, Senior Manager – Communications & Consumer Education; Samantha Delgado, Manager – Communications & Consumer Education

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