News Feed Item

A Conflicted Optimism: Teens and Their Financial Future

Despite Anxiety About Debt and Employment, Survey Shows Teenagers Look to Wisdom of Parents and the Promise of College

KANSAS CITY, MO -- (Marketwired) -- 03/28/14 -- H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) -- As America's next generation looks ahead to adulthood, it is doing so with conflicted optimism, according to a recent national survey(1) conducted by H&R Block Dollars & Sense, a program designed to increase the financial fitness of American teens. The survey looked at the mind-set and behavior of young adults, ages 13-17, and found that eight of every 10 teenagers are worried about finding a good job and more than half are concerned about being worse off financially than their parents, who 75 percent say are their most important source of financial information. A whopping 78 percent are anxious about potential student loan debt, yet 97 percent still plan on attending college.

"Today's economic realities are bringing about real financial pressure and stress at a younger age," said H&R Block Chief Marketing Officer Kathy Collins. "Our survey shows 57 percent of teens use their own money on purchases, yet they often lack fundamental money management skills. The good news is, the research clearly illustrates a desire to learn, to grow and to become financially savvy -- and parents play a huge part in that."

Mom and Dad Know Best
In an era of being constantly "plugged in" and with advice coming from all directions and channels, 75 percent of teens still say their parents are their most important source of financial information. In fact, 62 percent of teens view their parents as good money management role models; only 4 percent say that they are bad examples. Additionally, almost half (47 percent) turn to their teachers for money knowledge.

"From navigating potential college scholarships to balancing a budget, finances can be complex and challenging at any age," said Collins. "We created Dollars & Sense in part as a guide and a resource, not just for teens, but for parents and educators charged with having these often difficult conversations and imparting lessons. Together, we can help give young people the understanding needed to manage their personal finances."

College: The High-Priced Ticket to a Well-Paying Job?
Despite the rising cost of college tuition and lack of jobs available within the marketplace, nearly all (97 percent) of survey respondents still plan on attending college, viewing it as a necessary step for future employment. In fact, 86 percent of teens believe it is more important than ever to choose a major that leads to a well-paying job. But, a vast majority of teens -- 78 percent -- worry about borrowing too much in student loans, fearing crippling debt after leaving college. Indeed, debt at graduation increased an average of 6 percent each year between 2008-2012, rising to an average of $27,000 per borrower.(2)

Accordingly, tuition and other expenses -- now averaging $22,866 for an in-state four-year public institution(3) -- have become paramount in the college selection process, especially among older teens: 42 percent of 17-year-olds say cost is the primary determining factor. Former benchmarks such as an institution's ranking and prestige (21 percent), its geography (16 percent), or status as family alma mater (1 percent) have become increasingly marginalized.

The Promise of a Better Tomorrow?
Median household income, as reported by the U.S. Census Bureau, fell for the fifth straight year in 2012. The current level of $51,017 is far below the $55,500 when the recession began and is the lowest mark, adjusted for inflation, since 1995 -- before all but today's oldest teenagers were even born(4).

Perhaps not surprisingly, 58 percent of teens now believe they will be less financially sound than their parents.

Taxes: The Great Unknown
Taxes remain a duty for adulthood, as teens are either disengaged or uninformed -- only three of every 100 have filled out an income tax form, while 26 percent feel the forms are too complex. Survey results also revealed teens' skeptical side, as 58 percent believe that most members of Congress do not pay income tax. Additionally, half feel that wealthy people cheat on their taxes, while 38 percent believe taxes are too high.

H&R Block Dollars & Sense
Funded by H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB), the world's largest consumer tax services provider, H&R Block Dollars & Sense provides educators and students with personal finance curriculum and resources to increase financial literacy among teens. Since 2009, H&R Block Dollars & Sense has donated more than $4 million in grants and scholarships. For more information, visit www.hrblockdollarsandsense.org.

About H&R Block
H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) is the world's largest consumer tax services provider. More than 625 million tax returns have been prepared worldwide by and through H&R Block since 1955. In fiscal 2013, H&R Block had annual revenues of $2.9 billion with 24.8 million tax returns prepared worldwide. Tax return preparation services are provided in over 11,000 company-owned and franchise retail tax offices worldwide by professional tax preparers, and through H&R Block digital products. H&R Block Bank provides affordable banking products and services. For more information, visit the H&R Block Newsroom.

(1) Survey results were obtained through online interviews among a representative sample of 1,003 teens ages 13-17. Interviews took place February 19-25, 2014. The survey was conducted by The Futures Company on behalf of H&R Block Dollars & Sense.

(2) "Student Debt and the Class of 2012," a report issued by The Project on Student Debt (an initiative of the Institute for College Access & Success)

(3) COLLEGEdata, a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling

(4) U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, 1968 to 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplements

Image Available: http://www2.marketwire.com/mw/frame_mw?attachid=2553663

Matt Hodson
Carmichael Lynch Spong
(612) 375-8534
Email Contact

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudbric, a leading website security provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cloudbric is an elite full service website protection solution specifically designed for IT novices, entrepreneurs, and small and medium businesses. First launched in 2015, Cloudbric is based on the enterprise level Web Application Firewall by Penta Security Sys...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Transparent Cloud Computing (T-Cloud) Consortium will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The Transparent Cloud Computing Consortium (T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data proces...
In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Nick Son, Vice President of Cyber Risk & Public Sector at Coalfire, will discuss the latest information on the FedRAMP Program. Topics will cover: FedRAMP Readiness Assessment Report (RAR). This new process is designed to streamline and accelerate the FedRAMP process from the traditional timeline by initially focusing on technical capability instead of documentation preparedness. FedRAMP for High-impact level systems. Early in 2016 FedRAMP officially publishe...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Roundee / LinearHub will exhibit at the WebRTC Summit at @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LinearHub provides Roundee Service, a smart platform for enterprise video conferencing with enhanced features such as automatic recording and transcription service. Slack users can integrate Roundee to their team via Slack’s App Directory, and '/roundee' command lets your video conference ...
Traditional on-premises data centers have long been the domain of modern data platforms like Apache Hadoop, meaning companies who build their business on public cloud were challenged to run Big Data processing and analytics at scale. But recent advancements in Hadoop performance, security, and most importantly cloud-native integrations, are giving organizations the ability to truly gain value from all their data. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, David Tishgart, Director of Product Marketing ...
Kubernetes, Docker and containers are changing the world, and how companies are deploying their software and running their infrastructure. With the shift in how applications are built and deployed, new challenges must be solved. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at19th Cloud Expo, Sebastian Scheele, co-founder of Loodse, will discuss the implications of containerized applications/infrastructures and their impact on the enterprise. In a real world example based on Kubernetes, he will show how to ...
Successful digital transformation requires new organizational competencies and capabilities. Research tells us that the biggest impediment to successful transformation is human; consequently, the biggest enabler is a properly skilled and empowered workforce. In the digital age, new individual and collective competencies are required. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bob Newhouse, CEO and founder of Agilitiv, will draw together recent research and lessons learned from emerging and established ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Coalfire will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Coalfire is the trusted leader in cybersecurity risk management and compliance services. Coalfire integrates advisory and technical assessments and recommendations to the corporate directors, executives, boards, and IT organizations for global brands and organizations in the technology, cloud, health...
As ridesharing competitors and enhanced services increase, notable changes are occurring in the transportation model. Despite the cost-effective means and flexibility of ridesharing, both drivers and users will need to be aware of the connected environment and how it will impact the ridesharing experience. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Timothy Evavold, Executive Director Automotive at Covisint, will discuss key challenges and solutions to powering a ride sharing and/or multimodal model in the a...
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
Join Impiger for their featured webinar: ‘Cloud Computing: A Roadmap to Modern Software Delivery’ on November 10, 2016, at 12:00 pm CST. Very few companies have not experienced some impact to their IT delivery due to the evolution of cloud computing. This webinar is not about deciding whether you should entertain moving some or all of your IT to the cloud, but rather, a detailed look under the hood to help IT professionals understand how cloud adoption has evolved and what trends will impact th...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, will discuss how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team a...
A completely new computing platform is on the horizon. They’re called Microservers by some, ARM Servers by others, and sometimes even ARM-based Servers. No matter what you call them, Microservers will have a huge impact on the data center and on server computing in general. Although few people are familiar with Microservers today, their impact will be felt very soon. This is a new category of computing platform that is available today and is predicted to have triple-digit growth rates for some ...
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
Governments around the world are adopting Safe Harbor privacy provisions to protect customer data from leaving sovereign territories. Increasingly, global companies are required to create new instances of their server clusters in multiple countries to keep abreast of these new Safe Harbor laws. Is it worth it? In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Adam Rogers, Managing Director of Anexia, Inc., will discuss how to keep your data legal and still stay in business.