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News Release

New Jersey Department of
Banking and Insurance

Commissioner Ken Kobylowski

For Immediate Release:
February 24, 2015

For Further Information:
Ed Rogan or Marshall McKnight (609) 292-5064

Christie Administration Advises High School Students to Learn About Money, Credit and Make Smart Financial Decisions

ALLENDALENew Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance Division of Banking Chief Examiner Richard J. Abdill, Jr. last week urged high school students at Northern Highlands High School to learn as much as they can about financial issues, save their money, be careful with credit cards and try to make smart financial decisions.

 “Learning about money and financial issues is important and will impact your credit score and how much interest you will have to pay on loans,” Abdill told the group of more than 150 students at Northern Highlands High School. “If you learn to make smart financial decisions now, it will help you for the rest of your life.”

Abdill addressed the group as part of the Department’s long-running Financial Literacy program. For the last eight years, the Department has conducted financial literacy programs for high school students and spoken to thousands of students in school across the State about topics including basic personal finance, the importance of credit and how to manage credit cards.  In 2012, the Department expanded the program to include programs for senior citizens and in 2013 for college students.  

“You should jealously guard your credit score and make sure that you pay all bills on time.  Always have a backup plan to get your bills paid.  If you typically use online payments, make sure you have checks to send a payment in the event that the electronic payment system is not functioning properly,” Abdill said.

Some of the other tips Abdill provided included:

  • Pay Yourself First - As you start to work and receive paychecks, make sure the first bill you pay is to your own savings account.

  • Credit Cards: You need no more than one or two credit cards. Pay off the balance every month.

  • Protect you credit rating: Make sure you understand the importance of establishing a strong credit history and paying all bills in a timely fashion. 

  • Set Up a Budget: Make a list of all your expenses; don’t spend more than you earn.

  • Be Careful with Social Media: Be very careful with what information you post on social media sites, especially financial information.
Financial Literacy at Northern Highlands High School   From left, Northern Highlands High School student Ely Hsu, principal Joseph Occhino, Department of Banking and Insurance Chief Examiner Richard J. Abdill, and student Andrew Boyajian.
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