Financial Literacy and Retirement Preparedness: Evidence and Implications for Financial Education Programs

27 Pages Posted: 20 Jan 2007

See all articles by Annamaria Lusardi

Annamaria Lusardi

Stanford University - Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research

Olivia S. Mitchell

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School; University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School, Pension Research Council; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: January 2007

Abstract

Economists are beginning to investigate the causes and consequences of financial illiteracy to better understand why retirement planning is lacking and why so many households arrive close to retirement with little or no wealth. Our review reveals that many households are unfamiliar with even the most basic economic concepts needed to make saving and investment decisions. Such financial illiteracy is widespread: the young and older people in the United States and other countries appear woefully under-informed about basic financial computations, with serious implications for saving, retirement planning, mortgages, and other decisions. In response, governments and several nonprofit organizations have undertaken initiatives to enhance financial literacy. The experience of other countries, including a saving campaign in Japan as well as the Swedish pension privatization program, offers insights into possible roles for financial literacy and saving programs.

Suggested Citation

Lusardi, Annamaria and Mitchell, Olivia S., Financial Literacy and Retirement Preparedness: Evidence and Implications for Financial Education Programs (January 2007). Michigan Retirement Research Center Research Paper No. WP 2006-144, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=957796 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.957796

Annamaria Lusardi

Stanford University - Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research ( email )

366 Galvez Street
John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Building
Stanford, CA CA 94305
United States

HOME PAGE: http://siepr.stanford.edu/people/annamaria-lusardi

Olivia S. Mitchell (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School, Pension Research Council ( email )

3302 Steinberg Hall-Dietrich Hall
3620 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6302
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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