Photo by Xavier Verges
Do you know what the interest is on your student loan?
Do you know your credit score?
What about the APR of your credit card?
Do you know what an APR is?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, don't worry; you're not alone. Financial literacy hasn't been emphasized in schools as other types of literacies have, but the US government and educational institutions are beginning to realize that this needs to change.
Financial literacy is defined as "the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage financial resources effectively for a lifetime of financial well-being" (President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy, 2009).
Money Smart Week is one attempt at prompting financial literacy. Created by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, it's a public awareness campaign designed to help consumers manage their personal finances. Public and academic libraries throughout the country are providing programming on topics such as saving and investing, credit and debt, identify fraud, budgeting, and the like.