April has been declared Financial Literacy Month and we, at the Financial Literacy Center, celebrate it by meeting with our team members to present preliminary results from the 19 projects the teams are doing in year 2. The research teams are tailoring educational materials for people at various stages of their lives: young workers, mid-career workers, those approaching retirement, and retirees. They are also targeting underserved populations such as low-income, young, and disabled workers, all of whom are particularly vulnerable during periods of financial turbulence.
The second year activities cover a range of topics, including:
• How automatic enrollment in pension plans can improve savings
• How to increase the use of the government’s key tax-time savings policies, particularly the Saver’s Credit targeted to lower-income households
• How financial advisors help their clients decide when to claim Social Security benefits and whether this advice is based on client attributes
• How to develop an effective curricula to teach financial literacy to pre-service K-8 teachers and adult learners
• How to improve access to financial services for legal immigrants
• Whether additional disclosure would be valuable in helping people anticipate and plan for health care expenses in retirement
• Whether an intensive online “financial bootcamp” for women is effective in modifying behavior.
We held our meeting at Harvard Law School and I am grateful to Howell Jackson for hosting the workshop in the elegant rooms of HLS. But the New England weather did its April fool’s trick: rather than warm spring weather, we got several inches of snow today. (Note to self: move closer to the equator!)
You can read more about our projects at: http://www.rand.org/labor/centers/financial-literacy/projects.html
And you can see a picture of all of us on Facebook!