If the words ‘personal finance’ makes you shudder, LearnLux is here to help. LearnLux is a financial education company with the goal of making financial literacy a priority for young people.
The company’s co-founder Rebecca Liebman recognized that personal finance is a challenging issue for many young people today and set out to change that relationship.
“We realized nobody knew anything about personal finance, even people working in the finance industry didn’t know much about day-to-day finances.”
Liebman says several elements contribute to the neglect of such an important issue.
”I think it’s an intimidating thing and when you actually go out and try to learn, all the resources are full of this financial jargon that nobody understands. And when you’re in your 20s, are you thinking about retiring when you’re in your 60s or 70s? Most people aren’t. ”
To deal with this challenge, Liebman developed LearnLux, which teaches personal finance skills and connects people with financial institutions. When young people take a proactive approach to their finances, they benefit from significant long-term returns, Liebman says.
”In reality, if you save now, instead of starting ten years from now, you can add millions of dollars to your retirement account, just from time. I don’t think people think about that, they think about ‘how can I afford beer this weekend?’ ”
Liebman reached out to a psychology professor at her college, Clark University, who spent years studying the behaviors of people between 19-34, an age which he termed ‘emerging adulthood’. From 2014-2015, Liebman conducted research on the financial behaviors of this group, looking at when, how, and where people get their information about personal finance.
“Through this research, I discovered that the millennial age group holds the majority of our assets in cash. We grew up in this time period where we saw our parents get laid off, we saw the recession and we don’t trust the economy.”
This lack of knowledge coincides with a period when people are likely to be making significant financial decisions, like paying off student loans, buying homes, combining finances with a spouse, and having children.
Liebman, herself a millennial, understands that many young people are underprepared to take a proactive approach to personal finances.
”It’s not your fault you don’t have a retirement account, it’s just that no one ever told you what to do. Because it’s not taught in the education system, we want to teach finance to people in a way that anyone can understand it.”
LearnLux can be distributed by organizations, or accessed for individual use through their website.
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