Kids want to talk more about money management

(Toronto, ON - October 29, 2012) – On the eve of Financial Literacy Month, a new opinion research survey found that only one-third of Canadian youth, ages 10 to 17-years, say that their parents regularly talk with them about money and finances. The research, conducted by Ipsos Reid on behalf of ABC Life Literacy Canada and sponsored by TD Bank Group, found that money is one of the least discussed issues between parents and kids.

“It’s concerning that parents appear reluctant to talk to their children about money and finances, perhaps it’s because they believe their kids aren’t interested in the subject or won’t understand,” said Sean Simpson, Associate Vice President at Ipsos Reid. “Since learning about essential life skills usually starts at home, parents should be open to having an ongoing dialogue with their children about money.”

The research also found that 34 per cent feel that there are secrets in their home when it comes to money, and 30 per cent felt that their family has money problems.

“The first step in improving financial literacy is to take the fear out of finance.  Parents need to speak with their children about money management to help teach and guide them, and to help increase every family member’s financial literacy levels,” said Margaret Eaton, President of ABC Life Literacy Canada.

More than 30 per cent of youth surveyed wish their parents would talk to them more about their family’s finances; while 21 per cent say that it’s usually up to them to initiate conversations about money and finances with their parents. See an infographic of the research.

“Financial Literacy Month reminds us of the importance of money management skills in today’s modern economy,” said John Tracy, Senior Vice President, Retail Savings and Investment, TD Bank Group. “We all have a role to play – families, educators, community groups, government and banks - in improving financial literacy.”

ABC Life Literacy Canada offers the following tips and advice to parents to help improve financial literacy:

  1. Increase your knowledge, increase your confidence. When you feel good about your own money management skills, you will feel more confident talking about money with your children. Learn more about budgeting and saving at
  2. Create a spending plan and share it with your kids. Write down all anticipated costs – and talk about the difference between needs and wants.
  3. Encourage your kids to journal about money. Have your children write down the cost of each and every purchase that they make. At the end of a week, use the journal to initiate a conversation about money and priorities.
  4. Start a tax-deferred RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) for your child’s post-secondary education right away. Explain to your child that money is being saved now for their future education. Studies show that children are more likely to attend university or college if they know that there is money earmarked for their education, regardless of amount.
  5. Get children to save at least 10 per cent of their allowance.Talk to your kids about the benefits of the “pay yourself first” approach.

ABC Life Literacy Canada also increases financial literacy through Money Matters, a free money management and education savings program for adult learners developed in partnership with Founding Sponsor TD Bank Group and the Government of Canada. Money Matters has reached more than 600 adult learners to date, by bringing TD Bank Group volunteer-tutors into community learning centres across Canada to teach numeracy and financial skills. Money Matters is also now available in French.

To read a copy of the full Ipsos Reid factum, click here.  For full tabular results, please visit

About the research

The survey used an online methodology with fieldwork running from August 20 to 27, 2012. An overall sample of 539 youth under the age of 18 were sampled, with 273 being between the ages of 10-13 and the remaining 266 being between the ages of 14-17. The precision of Ipsos online polls are calculated using a credibility interval.  In this case, the poll is accurate to +/- 4.8 percentage point for all Canadian youth under the age of 18, +/- 6.8 percentage points for all Canadians between the ages of 10-13, and +/- 6.9 percentage points for all Canadians between the ages of 14-17.


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ABC Life Literacy FLM 2012Factum.pdf343.5 KB
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