2017 Teens and Personal Finance Survey results released by Junior Achievement USA

2017 Teens and Personal Finance Survey Summary 1

The survey of 1,000 teens between the ages of 13 and 17 was conducted by Opinion Research International between March 14 and 21, 2017.

The focus of the poll included teens’ perceptions related to income tax rates, their understanding of 401Ks, and future income expectations.

Key Findings

Finding 1

More than 3 in 5 teens (62%) purchase items in a store using cash, while fewer than 1 in 3 (29%) said they use a credit/debit card. Far fewer (4%) use an electronic form of payment such as Apple Pay, Google Wallet, or Paypal; or use a check (1%). Five percent weren’t sure.

What Teens Think Financial Literacy-01

Finding 2

Half of teens (50%) receive an allowance. Almost three fourths of those who get an allowance (73%) earned it by doing chores around the house. The other quarter of teens (23%) get an allowance regardless of whether they do chores or not.

What Teens Think Financial Literacy-04

Finding 3

While 30 percent of teens accurately answered that a 401K is a retirement plan where the employee contributes a certain amount and the employer matches, almost 3 in 4 teens (70%) don’t know what a 401K is.

What Teens Think Financial Literacy-02

Finding 4

Another important piece of teens’ financial futures is the understanding of income tax. The survey revealed that 37 percent of teens have the misperception that the average American pays an income tax rate exceeding 40 percent (in actuality the average rate is 31.5 percent for Federal, State and FICA, according to the Tax Foundation.) Only 1 in 3 (29%) teens answered in the proper range (21-40 percent). Thirty-three percent came in low between 1-20 percent.

What Teens Think Financial Literacy-03

Finding 5

JA asked teens about their income expectations for their first job. Based on the results, 47 percent of teens think that they will make less than $35,000 while 28 percent believe they will make more than $35,000. A full 22 percent weren’t sure where their income would fall.

What Teens Think Financial Literacy-05

Read the full results here.

This report presents the findings of an Opinion Research Corporation’s Youth CARAVAN survey conducted among a sample of 1,000 13-17 year olds. Respondents for this survey are selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls. Because the sample is based on those who initially self-selected for participation, no estimates of sampling error are calculated.

About Junior Achievement USA®
Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches 4.8 million students per year in more than 100 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.6 million students served by operations over 100 other countries worldwide. Visit http://www.ja.org for more information.

About Junior Achievement of North Florida
Junior Achievement of North Florida has been operating in Jacksonville since 1963 and now includes a satellite office in Tallahassee. Through an innovative partnership between the business community, educators and volunteers, Junior Achievement of North Florida helps young people connect with relevant learning and the importance of staying in school. This collaboration resulted in 56,489 students reached during the 2015-2016 school year. To learn more about Junior Achievement of North Florida, visit www.JAjax.com.

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