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Florida dodges financial literacy dumbest state status

By Dian Vujovich

If you know what the picture included with this blog is, I’m going to guess you’re not  financially  illiterate. You’re also likely to remember when adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing were tasks learned in school by actually doing with pencil in hand and/or memorized.

Of course today thumbs and computer calculations have taken over a lot of those simple mathematical tasks. That’s  too bad, too, because to be really financially literate requires being able to accomplish the simplest tasks such as adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing on your own.

I’m going to guess that pretty much every Palm Beacher knows that. And,  they’ve also learned that depending upon devices—or others– to do that math work puts them  at a huge disadvantage and opens the door  to be taken advantage of. As in swindled.

Outside of the little island hamlet of PB, when it comes to financial literacy, turns out Floridians are smarter than folks living in 27 other states. This according to research from WalletHub.com who  assessed states in the following financial literacy categories: knowledge & education, and, planning and daily habits.

Starting with the dumbest results, WalletHub’s list of the Top 10 Dumbest States for Financial Literacy: 2014 has Louisiana, Nevada, Arkansas and Mississippi ranked as the bottom four. The unique distinction of the dumbest state goes to Mississippi.

Choose to live in the state that is the smartest and ranks No. 1 on the Top 10 Smartest States for Financial Literacy: 2014 and you’ll have to move to New Hampshire. In addition to its top overall ranking, it’s also ranked  No. 1 in knowledge and education, as well as in planning and daily habits.

Utah, Virginia and New Jersey came in the second, third, and fourth positions for overall ranking, but not necessarily tops in the two categories from which the scores were calculated.

So where does that leave the Sunshine State? Well,  kinda, sorta somewhere in the middle, almost.

WalletHub gives Florida an overall rating of 23 (out of 50). But when it comes to knowledge and education it’s ranked 31st. We apparently  smarter with  money  in our planning and daily habits use of it. The state ranked 15th in that category.

While Floridians may have dodged the dumbest bullet, there’s clearly plenty of room for financial literacy improvement. Maybe it’s time for our kids to start fiddling with beads once again. After all, the abacus (that’s what the photo is of) was the  go-to counter and calculator for centuries. It requires no plug-in or batteries to use. Only an educated mind.

WalletHub’s complete listing of the where states are ranked with respect to financial literacy visit: http://tinyurl.com/mhsy2yr .

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