That many, if not most, Americans are woefully short on knowledge about finances and financial markets is no surprise. Even so, it will take more than special recognition over the course of a month to build momentum on Capitol Hill for the topic of financial literacy.
Only a handful of relevant bills were introduced this month. Just one piece of legislation has more than 10 cosponsors — a Senate resolution designating April as Financial Literacy Month. And that was just approved April 23.
The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. was on the Hill today trying to generate interest in financial education by providing it for congressional staffers. The organization set up shop in a House office building for three hours, offering CFP® [professional] volunteers for 15-minute sessions of financial advice.
It was a pretty smart move. As a former Senate aide, I can attest to the fact that knowledge of the financial markets was not abundant among my Hill friends. In addition, one of the best ways to get the attention of a lawmaker is through his or her staff. The CFP® [professional] sessions are a unique way — certainly different from the basic office drop by — to put financial literacy on the radar. Read more >
Mark Schoeff Jr.
April 26, 2013