The best laid plans
Estimated tax time again

Kids and cash coda

Interesting article on MSN Money about the earnings expectations of today's teenagers. According to columnist Liz Pulliam Weston, most youth are grossly misjudging how much money they'll one day make.

TeenagersWeston cites a "Teens and Money" survey that Charles Schwab released earlier this year. The poll of 1,000 Americans aged 13 to 18 from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds found that 73 percent believed they would earn "plenty of money" when they were adults; specifically, the teenage boys expected to make an average $174,000 annually, while their female counterparts expected to earn $114,200.

Reality calling today's youth: Fewer than 5 percent of the U.S. population, according to the latest (2005) U.S. Census Bureau data, makes more than $100,000. The median earnings of men who worked full time that year was $41,386; for women, the median annual income was $31,858.

These kids need to be disabused of their whack financial ideas and soon!

Weston's advice echoes that in my earlier Kids and cash post: Talk with your kids about money and its real-life applications. Do so early, well before they hit their teen years, and often.

You don't have to crush the kiddies. Continue to encourage your children to dream big. Just make sure those dreams are rooted in reality. If they hang onto get-rich-quick, American Idol fantasies too long, they'll be so far behind the real money curve that they'll never catch up.

Financial carnival, not just for kids: The 104th Carnival of Personal Finance is now available for your perusal. This week's host, Getting Green, has opted for a minimalist edition. Or, in GG's words, "Nothing flashy here, just 78 great personal finance articles."

I'm pleased to report that my above-referenced Kids and cash post is among those included in the Carnival's Family & Money section.

You'll also find the other 77 items spread across such categories as Budgeting and Saving, Credit and Debt, the ever-popular Making Money and the always useful Everything Else. Enjoy!


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$174K a year, huh? Boy are they gonna have a wake up call! I have taught a personal finance class to teenagers for two years now and I feel like I'm teaching them the most useful class they will ever take. I only get about 8 kids a semester. Why don't I have parents & students lining up outside my door? I guess they're focused on Trigonometry, like that's going to be really useful in their future(!) Thanks for linking the Schwab survey. Looks interesting.

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