“Bitcoin” is the financial term for which Americans are least confident of its meaning, according to The Knowledge Academy, a U.K. based provider of training courses which conducted a survey of 1,135 Americans to measure their understanding of financial terms.
That “bitcoin” would rank as the least understood term is not surprising, given its newness in comparison to the other financial terms the survey included.
Americans’ Financial Awareness Suffers
Americans were less uncertain about “index fund” (49% expressed uncertainty), “asset allocation” (44%), “stock options” (43%), “endowment” (42%), “annuity” (41%), “capital gains and losses” (40%), “Roth IRA” (39%), “mutual fund” (39%), “liquidity” (37%), “amortization” (36%) and “premium” (36%).
The low level of confidence about bitcoin is especially understandable given Americans’ generally poor grasp of financial terms in general, the survey indicated.
The researchers found the term “savings account” to be the one most Americans feel the most confident about, with 88% expressing confidence in the term. The second most confident term was “credit union,” with 76% of Americans claiming confidence, followed by “net worth” at 72%.
The key two elements of net worth, however, “assets” and “liabilities,” each only garnered 70% confidence.
Low Literacy Undermines Financial Competence
Joseph Scott, a spokesperson for The Knowledge Academy, said a lack of knowledge about financial terms will undermine Americans’ ability to make the best decisions about property management, investments and savings.
Only 16% of Americans demonstrate a high level of financial literacy according to research from the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association, which provides investment and insurance services for those working in education, medicine, culture and research.
However, another study by YouGov Omnibus conducted in late August found that nearly 80% (79%) of Americans are aware of one type of cryptocurrency, and bitcoin led the field with 71% awareness. The vast majority of those aware of bitcoin (87%) said they have not used it in any way.
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