Financial boot camp for kids

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WASHINGTON, D.C. - According to the Financial Educators Council, only 59 percent of young adults pay their bills on time.  Just 34 percent of parents have taught their teens how to balance a checkbook, and even less know how to handle a credit card.  Now, there's a way to teach your kids financial responsibility.

At just 13 years old, Andrew Swenson is learning about the stock market at this Future Investors Club of America camp for kids.  Lisa Swenson supports her son's hobby which may lead to a career in the future.

"I think that this is really his chosen path," said Lisa Swenson.

With pens in hand, business attire, and sharp answers, the campers are ready to turn their hobby into something more.

"We'll have some millionaires. We'll have some who are relatively financially successful," said Camp Director Frank Parks.

 A lack of girls at his camp is a common theme, which the camp leaders hope to change. "There is a huge market for females to get in the financial services industry," Parks said.

The Yang sisters both say they may be interested in careers in math. "It can be fun and interesting at the same time," Roslyn Yang was quoted as saying.

Financial expert Kathy Boyle says it's never too early to teach your kids about money. She has three tips for parents: talk to your kids about the value of money, teach them what credit is, and educate them about investing.

The kids here at camp seem to understand those basics.

"I don't spend a lot," said Andrew Swenson.

Even habits not directly related to money can impact your child's future financial success.  Teaching them how to maintain and nurture long-lasting relationships, the importance of detail-oriented work, and even the love of learning can help children be financially smarter as an adult.

Additional Information:

Like a majority of high-paying, high-pressure jobs in America, women have historically been discriminated against in the financial world.  A Bureau of Labor survey found that less than a third of financial advisors are women; the last census estimated 50.8 percent of the American population to be women.  Yet, a survey by investment firm Edward Jones found two-thirds of Americans believe the financial services industry is the hardest industry to break in to for women. (Source:

Financial Clout of Women: According to the Federal Reserve, in 2010 women controlled 51.3 percent of all of the wealth in the country, and that number is expected to rise to 66 percent by the year 2020.  Women totaled $13 trillion in earnings in 2010, and $20 trillion in spending.  Yet again, despite these numbers, only 11 percent of women said they prefer to work with a woman financial adviser.  Studies have shown women generally make more prudent decisions and provide consistently higher yields on funds they manage. (Source:

Why So Few Women Work in Finance:

  • It's a male-dominated profession: Generally, the finance world is a hugely male-dominated industry.  In 2010, only 2.5 percent of chief executives of financial companies were women.  And although the number of gender discrimination claims dropped from 2000 to 2008, the rates of claims per woman rose during the recession of 2008.
  • Young woman are choosing other careers:  According to study in 2010, the number of women getting into the industry aged 20 to 24 fell 21 percent in the previous decade.  The number of women aged 20 to 35 working in the industry fell 16 percent during the same period, while the number of men rose by 7 percent.  (Source:

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