March 3, 2018 1:01 pm

Study: Albertans’ financial literacy scores low

A new study shows Albertans are not confident in their financial literacy.

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A recent study has found Albertans feel as positively towards being tested on financial literacy as they do swimming with sharks.

Director of Communications & Investor Education at the Alberta Securities Commission, Allison Trollope, is trying to change those feelings.

“We were surprised to see Albertans attitudes towards their finances,” said Trollope. “They were quite negative.”

Trollope said the majority of Albertans have feelings of anxiousness, stress, insecurity and embarrassment towards their finances.

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“It’s difficult to know exactly why they feel this way,” said Trollope. “But we believe learning about your finances and increasing your financial literacy can be easy and enjoyable.”

One way to learn is Alberta Securities Commission’s new consumer website CheckFirst, which features easy-to-use videos to start Albertans off on the right foot when it comes to financial literacy.

The site covers retirement planning, risk and reward, and the red flags of fraud.

“The videos are easy to understand, we have some new tools — quizzes, calculators to help learn what your personal risk tolerance is,” said Trollope. “I think it can be fun.”

With the presence of fraud in society, simply learning about how to protect yourself can ease finance tension.

“One of the most important things we urge Albertans to do, is to understand the red flags of fraud,” said Trollope. “That can really go a long way to protect yourself.”

The agency hopes the site will empower Albertans to make safe and informed financial decisions.

“We really want Albertans to embrace financial literacy,” said Trollope.

March is Fraud Prevention Month in Alberta.

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