Canadians Cannot Become Financially Literate Without Understanding the Language

Financial literacy means knowing and understanding the tools needed to manage and grow your money. But how do we do that if we don’t understand the language? The gap between the language the financial services industry uses and the consumer’s understanding is huge. In this fast-changing world of cryptocurrency, digital assets, and artificial intelligence, how does the consumer keep up?

Each industry has its jargon, and the financial services industry is no different. Different sectors within the industry use similar words to mean different things. And acronyms abound! No wonder the consumer is confused. Financial advisers must help consumers understand the language. Why don’t they? There are three main reasons:

  1. It’s not easy switching languages
    Financial advisers spend years learning the language of their field. They spend their days reading material and talking with peers where that jargon is commonplace.
  2. Professional people want to sound smart
    Humans have a desire to show how smart we are. Many professionals hope that sounding impressive will make them appear impressive.
  3. The range of financial products is growing too quickly for people to keep up
    Every day we hear of new ways to make money. Artificial or virtual assets are on the rise, bringing with them their own jargon and cachet.

Everyone should be given the opportunity to understand what they’re doing before they part with their money. And that starts with the financial services industry learning how to speak to the consumer in language the consumer will understand.

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