Financial Update (January-March 2001)

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Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

2001 Outlook

Economic Review Article

New Birmingham Building

New Consumer Protections

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Financial Literacy Conference

Updated Brochure

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Financial Literacy Conference Focuses on Increasing Personal Savings

Ways to increase personal savings and strategies to educate at-risk consumers were just two of the topics discussed at the fall conference of the Georgia Consortium for Personal Financial Literacy, held at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta late last year.

The conference focused on savings-related issues, including why many Southerners have not accumulated as much wealth as residents in other areas of the country during the record U.S. economic expansion. Conference participants also discussed techniques that agencies and organizations can use to teach consumers about the importance of savings and help them implement strategies to increase their personal savings and make sound financial choices.

Speakers at the conference included Yolanda Batts, program manager at the Southern Growth Policy Board; Douglas Bachtel, a family and consumer sciences professor at the University of Georgia; June Somers, senior vice president of professional development at the Georgia Bankers Association; Milton Brown, chairman and executive director at Good Choices Inc.; and Natallie Keiser, community building liaison at the United Way.

Clark Howard, an Atlanta television and radio consumer advocate, received an outstanding achievement award at the conference.

In remarks to the conference, Jack Guynn, president and chief executive officer of the Atlanta Fed, said that savings help families with unexpected financial difficulties and provide a solid foundation that helps U.S. businesses to grow. Guynn also noted that it is a challenge to teach consumers to make investments when they are bombarded by advertisements for products that depreciate, like cars, clothes and appliances.

The Georgia Consortium for Personal Financial Literacy helps Georgians make wise financial decisions by raising public awareness, fostering collaborative efforts, recognizing research and best practices in a variety of areas and serving as a clearinghouse of information about financial literacy. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta is one of the consortium?s founding organizations.