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For Immediate Release                         Media Contacts: Chris Davis/Candice Tang 805/687-3322

Local Business Woman Vanessa Patterson Addresses members of Congress on Financial Security Education for Young Adults

Speaks at Young Americans Savings Forum in D.C.; States Concern over Financial Security for Younger Adults

July 7, 2010 – Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties/Washington, DC—Recently, Santa Barbara’s Vanessa Patterson spoke before a Congressional Panel including Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), John Spratt (D-SC), Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels. 

The hearing and panel discussion focused on the importance of ensuring financial security for young Americans.  Young adults disproportionately lack the financial education necessary to make informed decisions about major financial issues, particularly their retirement savings. The lack of financial literacy is compounded by high levels of debt. Together, these patterns are especially worrisome given that the decline of defined benefit pensions has left the responsibility for retirement security largely in the hands of individual workers.

Patterson is passionate about increasing financial education for younger generations.

“We have to address the lack of financial education young adults have to make informed financial decisions, we have to improve the vehicles our young adults have for savings, we have to allow increased flexibility in regards to retirement contributions into individual retirement accounts and other retirement savings, we have to better protect these investors from lack of fiduciary responsibility on behalf of money managers, we have to explain expense ratios and the differences, and we have to better utilize technology to help clarify the true financial picture of each American,” said Patterson

“What our nation is experiencing is unprecedented and workers must be able to access the same means of investing and saving for tomorrow’s retirement as highly compensated individuals, who can now take advantage of deferred compensation plans, which enable them to defer unlimited amounts of taxable income into future years.  Why shouldn’t young Americans at lower incomes have the same availability?”

Excerpts from Patterson’s  Statement at the Young Americans Savings Forum

I find financial security for young Americans to be the most ominous issue facing our nation and definitely a problem needing to be addressed.  One can easily argue that the best thing we can do to ensure our continued prosperity as a nation is to help all Americans live financially free and stable lives, but young Americans in particular can expect lasting damage from both the financial sector crisis and the personal financial crisis in the areas of jobs, education, retirement planning, home ownership, and indebtedness.

For example, young Americans are experiencing the highest level of unemployment in a generation.  37% of 18 – 29 year olds are unemployed or involuntarily out of the workforce.  In addition, young Americans are taking on more and more debt.  About half of young Americans are unable to pay their bills on time, 20% have over $10,000 of credit card debt, and the average graduate of a public university is leaving college with $19,000 worth of student loans.   Not only that, 70% of “Generation Y” are not building up a cash cushion and are incredibly and increasingly vulnerable with little support to fall back on.

In order to prevent this crisis, it is necessary to create a new fiscal policy that both parties must have a stake in; we need to also increase awareness of this issue and provide ways for younger generations to gain access to education and tools that will help them become more responsible for their own retirement.

About Monarch Wealth Strategies

Monarch Wealth Strategies is an industry leader known for philanthropy, the highest ethical standards, exceptional and competent services, and integrated financial planning strategies. For more information, visit www.monarchwealthstrategies.com or call (805) 564-0800.

Vanessa Patterson is a Wealth Consultant with and securities offered through LPL Financial.

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