April is Financial Literacy Month, an effort to increase financial understanding in the U.S. But while Americans definitely need some help to better understand money, this isn’t the answer.
According to a 2015 S&P Global Financial Literacy Study, the U.S. ranks 14th in financial literacy; nearly half of the population rates as financially illiterate. The ability of Americans to understand the financial world and properly manage their finances is intrinsically tied to the prosperity of the American economy.
Unfortunately, Financial Literacy Month is a miss — its blanket approach to finance is flawed by design and can’t work. What Americans need most right now is not one-size-fits-all advice but rather help developing individual plans, tailored to their specific needs, to answer the question, “What next?” General guidelines won’t answer the financial questions most relevant to their lives. If the advice isn’t personalized, situational and actionable, most Americans won’t even remember it.