T. Rowe Price: Most parents lie to kids about money

About three-quarters of parents talk to their kids about money, according to a recent survey by Baltimore’sT. Rowe Price.

But many of those parents aren’t being honest. The survey of 1,008 parents and 837 kids age 8 to 14 found that 77 percent of parents confessed to fibbing to kids about finances. And 15 percent lied at least once a week.

When when it comes to lying to kids, though,  I wasn’t so disturbed by Price’s findings.

Forty-three percent of parents said they don’t tell kids how worried they are about money. I can understand that parents don’t want to scare kids. Although if a parent loses a job, it’s good for kids to know that the family will have to cut back on spending while mom or dad finds another job.

And nearly one-third of parents told a child they can’t afford something when they could. This made me laugh. I pictured a child in a store demanding the parent to buy something, and the parent cutting off all debate by just claiming the family can’t afford the purchase.

More parents (59 percent) believe in life on other planets than that Social Security will be in the same form by the time their kids retire (26 percent).

I would find it more bizarre if the majority of people didn’t think that throughout the entire universe there wasn’t any other life forms.

And for the 26 percent who think Social Security will be the same when their kids retire? Let’s hope not. Social Security needs some adjusting to account for the fact that there are fewer workers today supporting retirees than there were decades ago. Social Security has been adjusted before when it got into financial trouble. That’s why the full retirement age for younger workers has been pushed up from 65 to 67.

Kids on average gave parents a B+ as a financial role model, according to Price, and more than 90 percent said their parents did a good job teaching them money matters. 

Parents on average gave themselves a B-, although around one-third said they deserved a C or lower. And nearly four-out-of-10 parents say their own mom and dad didn’t do a good job imparting the lessons of finances, either.




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