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PFCU 2012 Financial Literacy Survey Reveals Philadelphians in Critical Need of Improving Financial Condition

Based on survey results and in recognition of Financial Literacy Month,
Philadelphia Federal Credit Union extends free
financial education programming to public

Philadelphia, PA, April 3, 2012 – In recognition of Financial Literacy Month, Philadelphia Federal Credit Union (PFCU) today discloses the results of its first annual Financial Literacy Survey, which provides insights into three key areas, including saving practices, spending habits and financial attitudes among Philadelphia-area residents.

The survey found that more than one-third (37%) of Philadelphians are in critical need of improving their financial condition – i.e., were not able to save any money in the past 12 months – and 84% of Philadelphians surveyed consider themselves less than “very knowledgeable” about personal finance. As a result, PFCU is expanding its free financial education programming now through May 31 to the public in an effort to instill healthy financial habits and increase financial confidence among all Philadelphians.

“The survey findings are concerning, but we believe that education can empower Philadelphians to take control of their current fiscal condition and begin to make improvements,” said Karl J. Bernhard, Accredited Financial Educator at Philadelphia Federal Credit Union. “There are simple, effective steps everyone can take today to cultivate the decision-making skills necessary to bring their financial goals more within reach.”

The survey revealed several notable insights into Philadelphians’ personal finance habits, including:

  • Among those who have rent, mortgage payments and/or other loan payments, nearly a quarter (22%) reported being late or skipping a payment at least once during the past 12 months.
  • Nearly half (45%) of Philadelphians who have a credit card “carry a balance” in a typical month.
  • Seventy-nine percent of Philadelphians have been less than “very successful” at keeping spending within their budget during the past 12 months.

Spending over budget and inability to save in the short-term are not the only issues; rather, survey results also indicated that many Philadelphians could face significant financial difficulties during retirement years. Bernhard says, “It’s critical that Philadelphians begin to manage their money better today so they can effectively plan for a more secure and satisfying future.” Additional key findings include:

  • More than four in 10 (43%) expect Social Security to provide a majority of their retirement income during retirement years.
  • Forty-nine percent of Philadelphians lack confidence that they will be able to accumulate enough in savings and investments to retire comfortably at a reasonable age. Just 16% describe themselves as being “very confident” in this regard. 

“There is a clear need for Philadelphians to make a long-term commitment to fiscal responsibility, and it’s our commitment to the community to provide the tools to help,” said James McAneney, President and CEO of Philadelphia Federal Credit Union. “As a not-for-profit financial institution, accessibility is one of our core values. We believe that everyone should be able to gain the knowledge necessary to establish a better financial future.”

To register for free financial education seminars offered through PFCU,
visit http://bit.ly/GW32eK.

Survey Methodology
Philadelphia Federal Credit Union commissioned Amplitude Research, Inc. to conduct a web survey between March 14 and March 16, 2012. Respondents, ages 18 or older, pre-identified as living in the Philadelphia Metro area were invited to participate in the survey. The estimated sampling error for the 350 respondents is +/- 5.2 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.

Editor’s Note: For an infographic detailing key findings from PFCU’s 2012 Financial Literacy Survey, please visit: http://bit.ly/HhRkfT, http://bit.ly/Hc1Imm and http://bit.ly/HR8uPo. Interviews with PFCU’s Accredited Financial Educator can be arranged upon request.

About Philadelphia Federal Credit Union
Founded in 1951, PFCU is a member-owned, not-for-profit, financial institution serving Philadelphia and Columbia County. PFCU is among the top five credit unions in the Greater Philadelphia area with nine branch locations, more than $819 million in assets, 105,000 members and 400 Select Employee Groups (SEGs). PFCU returns its profits to members in the form of higher dividend rates, lower loan rates, better services, and investment in the community. For more information, visit www.pfcu.com and connect with PFCU on Facebook and Twitter.

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