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Old 10-27-2011, 06:49 PM   #41
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#4 also. I 'knew' the answer but just didn't like it.



heh heh heh - At 68 on full auto(aka balanced index) I can be as stupid, cranky as my little ole curmudgeony heart desires.
So there.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:04 PM   #42
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Got 100% right. #4 was a easy for me because I've had the first two types of mortgages early in life.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:16 PM   #43
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90%/60. #3 got me, I read most important instead of least important. Oh those darn little talking people in my head. Knew the answer just didn't read the question, I think I should give myself a E for reading comprehension.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:51 PM   #44
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I was secretly afraid that I would not do well. Debated whether or not I would put down my score, if i did poorly. Age 58, 100%. I thought it was going to be a hard test.

I am sure that some of my older relatives would not know about 401Ks and Roth IRAs. Those were not really available to them during their working years.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:52 PM   #45
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Something's fishy... Each problem has 3 chioices. Answering randomly would give you an average score of 3.3/10. The chart accompanying the article shows people age 80 and over averaging less than this. Is this willful ignorance? Are old people that ornery?
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Old 10-27-2011, 08:17 PM   #46
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90% - question 4 got me.
Age 53
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Old 10-27-2011, 08:46 PM   #47
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100%.

I would expect that most of the members in this forum would score very high on the test, since they are all fairly basic questions.
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:04 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flotsamandjetsam
Something's fishy... Each problem has 3 chioices. Answering randomly would give you an average score of 3.3/10. The chart accompanying the article shows people age 80 and over averaging less than this. Is this willful ignorance? Are old people that ornery?
I'm a teacher. I have students that regularly get less than 25% on a multiple choice with 4 choices (A-D), over a large number of tests, so as to be statistically significant. They specifically (though not purposefully) choose the wrong ones, based on ignorance or misinformation. It well could be that older people get less than a monkey with a dart due to just being plain wrong.

FWIW, I'm young and got 100% as well.
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:06 PM   #49
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I would expect that most of the members in this forum would score very high on the test, since they are all fairly basic questions.
Looks like we aren't the only group to do well:

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Judging from our quiz results so far, MarketWatch readers are far smarter than the average American when it comes to questions about money. Our readers are averaging 97%, while the people in the study averaged a measly 50% on those questions.
MarketWatch readers score top marks on money quiz
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:28 PM   #50
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100 percent. Hard to believe "the respondents in Finke’s study answered on average just five of those 10 correctly."

People who are 80 probably score worse than people who are 60 because they probably don't do the things the quiz is about--they are probably not putting money into IRAs and 401ks; they surely are more likely to have their retirements funded by pensions; and for the most part, are they really deciding whether to get an adjustable rate or a fixed rate mortgage? Also, the financial instruments available to an 80-year-old over his or her lifetime are different than what's out there now; the stock market was only for rich people back then, and most people kept their money in the bank. Even those new-fangled CDs are a fairly recent alternative, so I can understand that generation not knowing or caring that there might be other places to put their money.
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Old 10-27-2011, 10:27 PM   #51
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Also, the financial instruments available to an 80-year-old over his or her lifetime are different than what's out there now; the stock market was only for rich people back then, and most people kept their money in the bank.
That's exactly what I thought of, especially regarding the Roth. I KNOW those weren't around, and I doubt ARM mortgages were very common.
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Old 10-27-2011, 11:42 PM   #52
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Even so, if there is a decreasing ability to answer the questions "correctly" based on age, that's an indication of a problem. Heck, I can't tell you how many classes I passed and certifications I got putting down answers that I knew were wrong, but were what the authorities wanted the answer to be.

Unless, of course, the reason the oldsters were getting lower scores is that they don't believe the standard answers and didn't care enough to try to "pass". Cranky old folks could easily do that. Honey badger don't give a $#!%.
That is really my point. A lot of folks are still grade getters at age 60. It is disheartening.

The real test of financial ability is not how you answer somebody's arbitrary questions but how well you do at running your financial life. Unless of course the purpose is to perform a professional job in some specialized market segment, for example derivative securities.

Many highly successful retirees no longer have to think about these things at all. The family office takes care of that.

Ha
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Old 10-28-2011, 01:48 PM   #53
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+1.

I rarely take any scored quizzes, and have burned enough training completion certificates and achievement awards to cover a good sized living room and ceiling.

Don't know how many Kilocalories they generated in the stove, but at least got some additional practical use out of them. Does that count as twofer?

Living well with what DW and I have is a wonderful reward. Especially no mortgages or car loans.
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Old 10-28-2011, 02:22 PM   #54
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That is really my point. A lot of folks are still grade getters at age 60. It is disheartening.

The real test of financial ability is not how you answer somebody's arbitrary questions but how well you do at running your financial life. Unless of course the purpose is to perform a professional job in some specialized market segment, for example derivative securities.

Many highly successful retirees no longer have to think about these things at all. The family office takes care of that.

Ha
ANd would you say most people over 60 are passing your test?

The people on this board, yes. The average senior though?

I'd go so far as to suggest the ability to pass this arbitrary test and the ability to run your financial life are strongly correlated, even though the former test is more or less irrelevant to the latter.
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Old 10-28-2011, 03:16 PM   #55
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ANd would you say most people over 60 are passing your test?

The people on this board, yes. The average senior though?

I'd go so far as to suggest the ability to pass this arbitrary test and the ability to run your financial life are strongly correlated, even though the former test is more or less irrelevant to the latter.
Yes, perhaps so. I just think these tests are ridiculous. Why did we retire, to score ourselves since "the man" is no longer doing it for us?

Those of us who still have living parents can just ask Mom or Dad for a few strokes. Others could request the same from husband or wife.

Or join a weight loss contest at your gym, they will publically post your score weekly.

Ha
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Old 10-28-2011, 04:05 PM   #56
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Interesting article and a 10 question quiz. I think most everyone here should do quite well on this test! I missed question 4 with a SWAG.

Our financial smarts erode quickly after age 60 - Robert Powell - MarketWatch
After reading the article I was expecting a lot harder quiz.
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Old 10-28-2011, 04:06 PM   #57
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I don't know that "financial smarts" erode over time so much as it is that the oldest folks among us (on average) performed considerably less self-directed investing and may not be as likely to need to rely on personal investments to reach their retirement goals.

Also just noticed I'm in the "peak" age group (45-49) so I guess I'll start getting more financially stupid in the not-so-distant future...
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Old 10-28-2011, 04:57 PM   #58
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Age 57/100%

I'm sure my mother (in her 80s) would do terrible on the test. Most of the things asked about she has either never dealt with -- they didn't have 401ks or Roth IRAs when she was working -- or is so long ago to have irrelevance to her.

I do believe that studies generally support the idea of some cognitive decline with aging.

However, this study (based on the article which was all I read) doesn't prove it in the least.

When I read this sentence I almost couldn't believe my eyes.

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“Our study is able to say that the decline in cognition is attributable to a decline in financial literacy,” said Finke. “The reason why we see these kinds of results is that people's ability to make relatively straightforward, objective, age-neutral type decisions declines with age.”
No the study doesn't prove that decline in cognition is attributable to a decline in financial literacy. The study may show a difference in financial literacy between people X age and people Y age. That is not the same thing as saying the difference is due to a decline in cognition. It could be due to simply a difference in base knowledge and exposure to certain information based upon age and what people were exposed to. (When my son -- adopted from Vietnam at age 8 -- had difficulty with a math question that was based upon events at a circus it didn't prove he couldn't do math -- rather he simply had no idea what a circus was as they didn't exist in the small rural village he had lived in)

Further, it is simply a guess to say that people's financial literacy declined. If I make a 100% on this test today and 20 years from now I make 60% then it might reasonable to hypothesize that my financial literacy has declined. Although there could be other reasons for the decline that decline in cognition. Some years ago I could no longer do algebra problems I did in high school. My cognition hadn't declined. I simply lost that skill due to lack of use. I had a need to take a course that required algebra so I relearned algebra easily so my capability of cognition hadn't changed.

However, we don't know that the people in their 70s or 80s scoring poorly would have ever scored higher. The people who are now 80 can't be assumed to have had the same financial literacy at age 40 as those people who are now age 40.
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Old 10-28-2011, 05:08 PM   #59
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I aced it as well. I got #4 right but I think I was forewarned from the prior posts here to be careful on that one
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Old 10-28-2011, 05:44 PM   #60
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Seeing as clifp's mom is quickly becoming the benchmark on the forums, I'm waiting to judge until I hear what she got on the quiz.
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