Advancing Financial Literacy, Capability and Well-Being among Hispanics

May 2016
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Hispanics are a distinctive demographic that is younger than the general population, changing rapidly and marked by a unique set of challenges. Moreover, by 2065 they are expected to make up nearly a quarter of the nation’s population.  


Hispanics are increasingly important to the U.S. economy. Yet financial literacy and capability in the Hispanic community are often lacking. To help inform policies, practices and services that can improve the financial well-being of Hispanic households, the TIAA Institute and The University of Texas at Austin Center for Mexican American Studies and Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies sponsored a symposium to examine the financial capabilities, practices and experience of Hispanics. This report presents the symposium’s findings and recommendations.

Key Insights
Lack of trust in financial institutions is common in the Hispanic community.
Partnering with schools, community groups and other trusted institutions can be an effective way to deliver financial information to Hispanics.
Financial advisors need to understand and address cultural nuances and dynamics common in Hispanic families.
It’s best to deliver financial education when there is an immediate need, with an opportunity to act on the information.
Mentors and advisors need to emphasize the importance of higher education, as education, financial literacy and financial success are interconnected.

The symposium was held on November 12, 2015, and featured prominent members of academia, government, public policy organizations, TIAA, and Hispanic-serving colleges and universities. Sixteen thought leaders from these sectors delivered presentations.