Financial literacy is key to strong economy: US Treasury Secretary Lew

Treasury hosted representatives from the 21 other agencies that make up the Financial Literacy and Education Commission (FLEC). To kick off the meeting, Secretary Lew emphasized the Administration’s commitment to helping young people get the skills and knowledge they need to pursue successful careers and contribute to our economy. Describing the positive reverberations that financial education can have throughout life, Secretary Lew reminded everyone in the room why it’s so important to invest in the financial literacy of children:

It is critical to begin building these financial skills early in life. By starting young, children can learn the difference between wants and needs, the importance and power of saving, and the positive and productive role carefully managing money can play in their lives.

“Starting Early” was the focus of today's FLEC meeting and this theme will guide the Commission’s efforts in the months and years ahead. That commitment was on display this morning as FLEC’s Children and Youth Committee discussed its work to identify areas where federal agencies can better support the financial education efforts of parents and teachers.

The Commission also invited outside organizations to discuss outreach to young people. A representative of Sesame Workshop, the team behind Sesame Street, gave a presentation on incorporating financial literacy into early education at home and in –pre-school settings. Researchers from the Urban Institute informed the Commission of their recent findings on young adults and economic insecurity.

In his remarks, Secretary Lew added how essential it is for all Americans to develop the basic financial knowledge to navigate a complex financial system. Equipping everyone with these resources and tools will not only financially empower them but also make the economy stronger.

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