In recognition of April being designated Financial Literacy Month, Ascend Federal Credit Union has added a special section to its online financial education center to help Middle Tennesseans improve their money management skills.
The financial literacy resource features free interactive learning tools including tutorials, videos and quizzes that provide expert guidance on building a budget, buying a home, understanding credit scores and reports, and much more. The new financial education module contains four sections: Healthy Financial Habits, Creating a Budget, Family Conversations about Money and Taxes: the Basics.
To encourage Middle Tennessean’s to become more financially savvy, Ascend is giving away 10 Spotify Premium annual subscriptions as part of its “Complete a playlist, get a playlist!” contest. Participants who complete the Financial Literacy Month playlist at http://bit.ly/spotify_everfi_2021 by April 30 will be automatically registered to win a year of Spotify Premium, a paid service from the world’s most popular audio streaming subscription service. For official rules on the contest, visit ascend.org/official-rules.
“At Ascend, our brand promise is to educate and help members become effective financial stewards,” said Leslie Copeland, chief strategy officer for Ascend. “To help fulfill this promise, we are excited to provide these free resources so individuals and families can better manage their finances. But we also want to make learning fun, so if you are a music fan, then this is a great way to begin or improve your understanding of financial topics so you can achieve your financial goals in life.”
Another financial tool offered by Ascend is called Money Management. This free budgeting tool is accessible within online banking. Along with helping users set goals for debt payoff, savings and retirement, Money Management provides one clean, secure and real-time snapshot of their finances from multiple sources like credit card accounts, loans and retirement plans.
Ascend also sponsored several financial literacy events at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) during the first week of April. Sessions featured topics such as “Personal Finance for College Students,” “Understanding Credit” and “How to Catch Your Dream!” – which was presented by Brandon Copeland, an NFL linebacker who is also a financial wellness professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Attendees to the MTSU events who submitted a reflection paper and action plan were eligible to receive a $1,000 Ascend Financial Literacy Scholarship.
Think you are already an expert in money and budgeting? Test your financial literacy by answering the questions listed below. (Hint: The answers can be found by reviewing the modules on Ascend’s Financial Literacy Month webpage and at the end of this press release.)
Financial Literacy Quiz 101
1. CREATING A BUDGET: A common budgeting strategy is to use the 50%-30%-20% rule, which recommends that you spend a certain percentage of your income on needs, wants and savings or paying off debt. Fill in the correct percentage: _____ Should go to wants._____ Should go to savings or paying off debt._____ Should go to needs.
2. HEALTHY FINANCIAL HABITS: Which of these items IS NOT considered a characteristic of being financially fit? ____ Earning enough to cover your weekly and monthly expenses.____ Being debt-free or having a manageable amount of debt.____ Having an average credit score.____ Having emergency savings.
3. FAMILY CONVERSATIONS: Even if one person takes the lead on day-to-day money management, it is important for each person to be aware of key financial information in case of injury, illness or incapacity. Which of these questions is considered important to discuss with your partner: ____ Is there a list of all accounts, investments, and debts?____ How are bills paid and expenses tracked?____ Do we both know the usernames and passwords for shared accounts?
4. TAXES – THE BASICS: Taxpayers may choose either to add up all their individual deductions or take the standard deduction for that year, which is based on filing status. Which of these IS NOT a filing status: ____ Single____ Divorced____ Married filing jointly____ Married filing separately____ Head of Household____ Qualifying Widow(er) About Ascend Federal Credit Union
Quiz answers1. 50% should go to needs; 30% should go to wants and 20% should go to savings or paying off debt.2. Having an average credit score.3. All are important.4. Divorced.