WASHINGTON – Just in time for financial literacy month a Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy survey reveals that the financial IQ of high school students has stayed steady. The survey of 5,775 high school students in 37 states measured 12th graders’ level of knowledge of personal finance basics and compared the results with those from similar surveys conducted in 2004, 2002, 2000 and 1997. The average score for the 2005-06 survey was 52.4%, up from 52.3% in the 2003-04 survey. “I hope that more state education departments and state governments move financial literacy to the top of the priority list,” said Laura Levine, executive director, of the national coalition. Here is a look at some of the findings: * 44.8% of students believe U.S. savings bonds offer the highest growth. * Students who have never bounced a check had average financial literacy scores of 53.4% while those who had bounced a check averaged just 45.8%. * Students who blamed the greatest cause of serious financial difficulty, where families can’t pay their bills, on bad luck, such as unexpected illness or job loss, had average financial literacy scores of 49% while those who felt that it was due to buying too much on credit had average scores of 55%. * White students scored an average of 55% while African Americans scored significantly lower at 44.7%; and Hispanics, 46.8%.
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