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Improving your financial literacy | Better Business Bureau

 

During Financial Literacy Month in April, Better Business Bureau reminds consumers to keep track of their credit, debt and sensitive financial documents.

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling says that most Americans are not up-to-date on their credit standing. According to the NFCC’s 2011 Consumer Financial Literacy Survey Final Report:

  • 65 percent have not obtained yearly credit reports within the last 12 months;
  • 63 percent have not requested credit scores.

Of those that have not checked credit histories:

  • 43 percent say they do not think it is useful or do not plan to apply for new credit;
  • 22 percent do not believe they have any credit history to review.

The same study finds that millions of Americans carry credit card debt month-to-month and 28 percent admit to not paying bills on time; seven percent currently have debts in collection.

BBB  encourages consumers to utilize free resources:

Free Credit Reports: annualcreditreport.com

National Foundation for Credit Counseling: nfcc.org

Federal Reserve: federalreserve.gov

Financial Literacy and Education Commission: mymoney.gov

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: consumerfinance.gov

FINRA Investor Education Foundation: saveandinvest.org

BBB’s Managing Credit – Made Simpler: bbb.org/credit-management

Be Money Wi$e: money-wise.org

Washington Jump$tart: wajumpstart.org or jumpstart.org

BBB urges consumers to also take advantage of free events:

BBB’s Secure Your ID Day – Free Shredding: akorww.bbb.org/secure-your-id

Money Smart Week: moneysmartweek.org

Find more credit tips at bbb.org.

 

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