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10 Smartest States for Financial Literacy: 2019

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With total American credit card debt surpassing $1 trillion for the first time in 2018 and only two in five adults having a budget, it’s clear that better financial education is necessary.

However, these problems aren’t as pronounced in every state. A new WalletHub study looks at which states’ residents are the most financially literate.

In order to do this, WalletHub analyzed financial education programs and consumer habits — combined with the results of WalletHub’s proprietary WalletLiteracy Survey — in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

WalletHub’s data set of 17 key metrics includes information like a high-school financial literacy grade, median credit score, share of adults with rainy-day funds, and share of adults who save for their children’s college.

To improve financial literacy, Jamie Wagner, director of the Center for Economic Education at University of Nebraska at Omaha, suggests that financial literacy should be a part of K-12 curriculum from day one.

“Many people think financial literacy is really tough (which it is) so we should wait until someone is older to teach them,” she told WalletHub. “But imagine if we applied that mentality to any other subject. Calculus is really hard so let’s not teach them math until they are seniors in high school and we can start with calculus – that sound ridiculous yet that seems to be the mentality around financial literacy.”

Have a look at the gallery above to see which 10 states have the best financial literacy.

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