Urs Ruegsegger, SIX, and chairman of the WFE Working Committee
"The response of WFE members to JPX's initiative has been heartening and demonstrates the interest of global exchanges in taking forward the financial education cause."
The World Federation of Exchanges, which represents public markets around the world, will start a new global industry initiative to promote financial education and entrepreneurial skills among school children and university students, following an overwhelming response from its members to join a new study group on the topic.
Thirty one exchange and clearing house members of WFE have joined the new initiative up to date.
The Financial Education & Literacy Study Group working under the aegis of the WFE's Working Committee and led by Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX) will extend the reach of current WFE, JPX and other exchange and clearing member initiatives and programmes.
The group will also facilitate the sharing of exchanges' expertise and experiences in the area of financial education for young people around the world.
The group, founded and chaired by JPX, is putting together an Action Plan in a first step to promote the hands-on and active acquisition of financial and entrepreneurial knowledge and skills by school pupils, college and university students.
JPX will share the experiences and insights it has gained using stock-trading games to convey to school pupils the importance of investment in stocks and shares. JPX will also share with other WFE exchanges its experience with the "JPX Entrepreneur Program", which encourages university students to think through business concepts and learn the practical skills involved in setting up a company. The group will share information about member efforts and projects globally.
The study group will review the range of financial education programs already in use by exchanges around the world and will help exchanges set up and run similar initiatives. It will also consider ways to promote wider recognition of excellence and achievements among programme participants. The FESG will also aim to build a global network of like-minded organizations and individuals engaged in financial education and nurturing a culture of entrepreneurship.
Since the 2008 financial crisis, global leaders have united in calling for better financial education. The G20 and the OECD are backing moves to improve financial literacy to encourage better-informed financial activity and, as a result, financial educators are likely to be called upon to increase their efforts as financial literacy gains importance in national curricula and education policies.
Urs Ruegsegger, Group CEO SIX and chairman of the WFE's Working Committee, welcomed the launch of the study group.
"The response of WFE members to JPX's initiative has been heartening and demonstrates the interest of global exchanges in taking forward the financial education cause.The new group marks a further extension of the breadth and reach of our general sustainable finance work. Following the announcement of our enhanced sustainability guidance last week, this new initiative shows again the WFE remains front and centre in the global financial sustainability debate," Ruegsegger said.
"JPX and other WFE members have been pioneers in the field of financial education for young people,'' WFE CEO Nandini Sukumar said.
''For regulated markets, financial literacy and investor education is a core mission and goes hand in hand with efforts to promote transparency and trust in markets. There is an abundance of best practice in this field that WFE members can share with clearing houses and fellow exchanges around the world. The WFE - with its global and diverse membership is the place where public markets globally will come together to share these valuable lessons and so further the promotion of financial literacy and education," Sukumar added.
JPX Group CEO Akira Kiyota said the need for the Financial Education & Literacy Study Group was clear as financial markets increasingly transcend national borders.
"Today, foreign investors account for 60% to 70% of trading at TSE and OSE, and we see more cross-market ETF listings. In Asia, the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect and the ASEAN Trading Link are also proof of progress toward markets and trading beyond borders. With capital markets becoming increasingly globalized and borderless, we recognize the need for a cross-border group to align and discuss the direction of financial education, and will lead the study group to prepare our future generations for active participation in capital markets," Kiyota said.