Evaluating the impact of financial literacy programs on the retirement savings of superannuation fund members
journal contributionposted on 2007-03-01, 00:00 authored by Michael Kerry, Bruce Clayton, Marc Olynyk
Currently, in Australia, the age pension, paid for out of Commonwealth government taxes, forms the basis of Australia’s retirement income system, however, given the reality of an ageing population has compelled the government to undertake a number of measures to shift the responsibility for saving to the individual, forcing them to accept an increasing level of responsibility for their financial decision-making. In the light of the changing retirement environment, it would be expected that Australians’ would ensure that they became financially literate, however, despite the amount of information and advice available in the market place, this is not the case, and they do not appear to be appropriately prepared for their retirement. Recognising the importance of financial literacy, an increasing number of government agencies, employers, superannuation funds and schools are implementing financial literacy programs in Australia. This article provides an overview of the impact that attending a financial education seminar has on the retirement decisions and settings of participants. Evidence is provided from this research that in the short term, providing financial education programs make a difference to an individual’s intended retirement settings. However, the impact of these education programs in changing investment behaviour is less conclusive.