Less than one in four young Australians have even a basic understanding of financial literacy, according to the latest Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey.

This lack of understanding is exacerbating the financial strain caused by COVID-19, given that many young Australians have both low and unstable levels of income.

The situation has prompted calls for teaching financial literacy as a standalone subject in school, but in the meantime young people whose parents help manage their finance, and who impart good management habits who are faring best.

Schools, universities, the Australian government and several financial institutions have developed additional programs, but nothing on the scale of an entire compulsory subject.

The current situation sees many young Australians run into financial difficulty as soon as they leave home, particularly in their first year of university. Many young people rack up debt on non-essentials, fueled by trends such as conspicuous spending on social media.

And this is before the decisions thrown up by crises like COVID-19 such as the option to withdraw money from superannuation, which hundreds of thousands of Australians are doing.

As things stand, it’s imperative for parents to ensure that their children have basic financial literacy skills in place, working with educators wherever possible.



Tax, Super and You

Read the full article by Rachel Riga at ABC News: Coronavirus crisis sparks calls for financial literacy to be taught as a subject in Australian high schools

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