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DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — Despite economic technology constantly evolving and the increase in nontraditional career paths, even younger generations are still stuck in their ways when it comes to what they think will garner success. In fact, one in three (33%) Gen Zers think a college degree is essential in order to make good money.

Similarly, out of all the generations surveyed, millennials were more likely than any generation to believe a college degree is still necessary to make good money, with only 30 percent of baby boomers following suit. To find out the current finance landscape across generations, FinanceBuzz surveyed 1,000 adults on their financial literacy and experiences with mobile payment apps. Overall, the data showed that the average person is not fully confident in answering questions about finance.

Gen Z may be clueless about their personal finances

Specifically, only one in three people claim they know what goes into calculating their credit score. Only one in five people know what an APR is and why it is essential when considering any investment.

Older generations seem to be more in tune when it comes to personal finances. Eighty-two percent of baby boomers know how much they currently have in their checking account without looking, while only 52 percent of Gen Z could confidently recall the amount.

Only 38 percent of Gen Z know their credit score, meaning they may not know their eligibility to qualify for a loan or credit card. Regarding financial skills, the survey uncovered that nearly half (44%) of Gen Z adults do not know how to write a check, compared to 95 percent of baby boomers who could.

Five out of six boomers still pay with cash, with only 21 percent of Gen Z doing the same. On the other hand, just 56 percent of boomers believe they can confidently use Venmo.

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Survey methodology:

FinanceBuzz surveyed 1,000 people on their financial habits and opinions and then categorized responses by the ages of the respondents. Researchers defined generations using Pew Research Center’s generation definitions as follows:

  • Baby Boomers: Born 1946-1964
  • Gen X: Born 1965-1980
  • Millennials: Born 1981-1996
  • Gen Z: Born in 1997 or later

About Sophia Naughton

Meet StudyFinds' Associate Editor, Sophia Naughton. Sophia graduated Magna Cum Laude from Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication directly focused in journalism and advertising. She is also a freelance writer for Baltimore Magazine. Outside of writing, her best buddy is her spotted Pit Bull, Terrance.

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Associate Editor