Investor Education and Financial Literacy
Utilize the resources provided through these Investor Education and Financial Literacy
links to help you become a better educated, well protected, and successful investor.
Investor Education Related Organizations
- Alliance for Investor Education
The Alliance for Investor Education is dedicated to facilitating greater understanding
of investing, investments and the financial markets among current and prospective
investors of all ages. The organization pursues initiatives for education and joins
with others to motivate Americans to obtain objective information and increase their
knowledge and understanding of investing.
- American Savings Education Council
ASEC is a national coalition of public- and private-sector institutions committed
to making saving and retirement planning a priority for all Americans. ASEC is a
program of the Employee Benefit Research Institute Education and Research Fund (EBRI-ERF),
a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (www.ebri.org).
- Investing Online Resource Center
The Investing Online Resource Center is designed to serve as a valuable source for
noncommercial information about investing online. This site was created solely for
educational purposes and is maintained by the North American Securities Administrators
Investopedia is a Forbes Media Company. The website is designed to provide investors
with information to help them make wise investment decisions. Topics of interest
include a dictionary, articles, tutorials, exam prep, a stock simulator, stock ideas
and an “ask us” section for additional information.
Brought to you by The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, Investor.gov
is your online resource to help you invest wisely and avoid fraud.
- Investor Protection Trust
The primary mission of the Investor Protection Trust (IPT) is to provide independent,
objective information needed by consumers to make informed investment decisions.
Founded in 1993 as part of a multi-state settlement to resolve charges of misconduct,
IPT serves as an independent source of non-commercial investor education materials.
IPT operates programs under its own auspices and uses grant to underwrite important
initiatives carried out by other organizations.
Types of Investment Groups
- American Association of Individual Investors
AAII is a nonprofit organization that arms individual investors with the education
and tools they need to build wealth.
- Better Investing
Better Investing is the nation's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to investment
education, with over 50 years of service. The organization serves as a provider
of investing knowledge and practical investing experience delivered through local,
regional and national educational events as well as stock-analysis tools, portfolio
management tools, investing software, publications and a range of online resources.
Financial Industry Regulators
- Commodities Futures Trading Commission
Created by Congress, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is an independent
agency with the mandate to regulate commodity futures and option markets in the
United States. The CFTC's mission is to protect market users and the public from
fraud, manipulation, and abusive practices related to the sale of commodity and
financial futures and options, and to foster open, competitive, and financially
sound futures and option markets.
- Financial Industry Regulatory Authority(FINRA)
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the largest non-governmental
regulator for all securities firms doing business in the United States. All told,
FINRA oversees over 5,000 brokerage firms, about 172,000 branch offices and more
than 676,000 registered securities representatives.
Created in July 2007 through the consolidation of NASD and the member regulation,
enforcement and arbitration functions of the New York Stock Exchange, FINRA is dedicated
to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation
and complementary compliance and technology-based services.
FINRA believes investor protection begins with education. Using the internet, the
media and public forums, they help investors build their financial knowledge and
provide them with essential tools to better understand the markets and basic principles
of saving and investing. In addition, the FINRA Investor Education Foundation is
the largest foundation in the United States dedicated to investor education.
- NASDAQ Market Information
NASDAQ is the largest U.S. electronic stock market. With approximately 3,200 companies,
it lists more companies and, on average, trades more shares per day than any other
U.S. market. It is home to companies that are leaders across all areas of business,
including technology, retail, communications, financial services, transportation,
media and biotechnology. NASDAQ is the primary market for trading NASDAQ-listed
- New York Stock Exchange
NYSE Euronext (NYSE/New York and Euronext/Paris: NYX) operates the world ' s largest
and most liquid exchange group and offers the most diverse array of financial products
and services. It is the most investor-friendly market in the world, dedicated to
protecting the interests of all investors, large and small. Their website brings
together investors and issuers, trades securities and fuels economic growth by providing
educational materials, investor education, industry resources and outreach programs.
- North American Securities Administrators
(NASAA) – Investor Education
Organized in 1919, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA)
is the oldest international organization devoted to investor protection. NASAA is
a voluntary association whose membership consists of 67 state, provincial, and territorial
securities administrators in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico,
the U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada, and Mexico.
In the United States, NASAA is the voice of state securities agencies responsible
for efficient capital formation and grass-roots investor protection. Their fundamental
mission is protecting consumers who purchase securities or investment advice, and
their jurisdiction extends to a wide variety of issuers and intermediaries who offer
and sell securities to the public.
- Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC) – Investor Education
The mission of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is to protect investors,
maintain fair, orderly, and efficient markets, and facilitate capital formation.
In an effort to adhere to this mission and provide protection via education, the
SEC has the Office of Investor Education and Advocacy. This office within the SEC
provides a variety of services to address the problems and questions investors may
face such as investor education publications, calculators, quizzes, tips, complaints
and links to other educational resources.
- Social Security Administration
The Social Security Administration's mission is to advance the economic security
of the nation’s people through compassionate and vigilant leadership in shaping
and managing America's Social Security programs.
Financial Education Information
- Jump$tart Coalition – Investor Education
Jump$tart is a national coalition of organizations dedicated to improving the financial
literacy of kindergarten through college-age youth by providing advocacy, research,
standards and educational resources. Jump$tart strives to prepare youth for life-long
successful financial decision-making.
- National Endowment for Financial Education
The National Endowment for Financial Education® (NEFE®) is the only private, nonprofit,
national foundation wholly dedicated to improving the financial well-being of all
Americans. The mission of the National Endowment for Financial Education is to help
individual Americans acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to take control
of their financial destiny. NEFE’s mission is grounded in the belief, that regardless
of background or income level, financially informed individuals are better able
to take control of their circumstances, improve their quality of life, and ensure
a stable future for themselves and their families.
- U.S. Department of Treasury –
Internal Revenue Service
(Tax Information for Retirement Plans Community)
The IRS is a bureau of the Department of the Treasury. Their mission is to provide
America's taxpayers top quality service by helping them understand and meet their
tax responsibilities and by applying the tax law with integrity and fairness to
all. To help taxpayers better understand the tax implications of their retirement
plans the IRS offers a variety of information on their website via newsletters,
published guidance, forms, products and publications.
U. S. Department of Treasury – Office of Financial Education
The Department of the Treasury is a leader in promoting financial education. Treasury
established the Office of Financial Education in May of 2002. The Office works to
promote access to the financial education tools that can help all Americans make
wiser choices in all areas of personal financial management, with a special emphasis
on saving, credit management, home ownership and retirement planning. The Office
also coordinates the efforts of the Financial Literacy and Education Commission,
a group chaired by the Secretary of Treasury and composed of representatives from
20 federal departments, agencies and commissions, which works to improve financial
literacy and education for people throughout the United States.
- U.S. Financial Literacy and Education Commission
MyMoney.gov is the U.S. government's website dedicated to teaching all Americans
the basics about financial education. Whether you are planning to buy a home, balancing
your checkbook, or investing in your 401k, the resources on MyMoney.gov can help
you do it better. Throughout the site, you will find important information from
20 federal agencies government wide.
- Virginia Council on Economic Education
The Virginia Council on Economic Education (VCEE), founded in 1969, is an independent,
nonprofit 501(c)3 educational organization. Their mission is to help students understand
basic economic principles and develop the decision-making skills needed to be informed
citizens, productive employees, and wise consumers. VCEE accomplishes this mission
by establishing educational standards, providing teacher training, developing curriculum,
disseminating materials and evaluating results.
Consumer Protection Organizations
- American Association of Retired Persons
AARP offers engaging and helpful content on a variety of topics including personal
finance, retirement and investing.
- Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) maintains the vision of an ethical marketplace
where buyers and sellers can trust each other. Their mission is to be a leader in
advancing this marketplace trust. The organization exists as a resource for consumers
and businesses alike to turn to for objective, unbiased information on businesses.
BBB provides educational information and expert advice that is free of charge and
- Consumer Federation of America
Since 1968, the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) has provided consumers a well-reasoned
and articulate voice in decisions that affect their lives. Day in and out, CFA's
professional staff gathers facts, analyzes issues, and disseminates information
to the public, policymakers, and rest of the consumer movement.
- Federal Trade Commission – Consumer
The FTC deals with issues that touch the economic life of every American. It is
the only federal agency with both consumer protection and competition jurisdiction
in broad sectors of the economy. The FTC pursues vigorous and effective law enforcement;
advances consumers’ interests by sharing its expertise with federal and state legislatures
and U.S. and international government agencies; develops policy and research tools
through hearings, workshops, and conferences; and creates practical and plain-language
educational programs for consumers and businesses in a global marketplace with constantly
- National Fraud Information Center
The NFIC was originally established in 1992 by the National Consumers League, the
oldest nonprofit consumer organization in the United States, to fight the growing
menace of telemarketing fraud by improving prevention and enforcement. Their mission
is to give consumers the information they need to avoid becoming victims of telemarketing
and Internet fraud and to help them get their complaints to law enforcement agencies
quickly and easily.
- Internet Crime Complaint Center
The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) is a partnership between the Federal Bureau
of Investigation (FBI), the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C), and the Bureau
of Justice Assistance (BJA). IC3's mission is to serve as a vehicle to receive,
develop, and refer criminal complaints regarding the rapidly expanding arena of
cyber crime. The IC3 gives the victims of cyber crime a convenient and easy-to-use
reporting mechanism that alerts authorities of suspected criminal or civil violations.
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
The central mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is to make
markets for consumer financial products and services work for Americans — whether
they are applying for a mortgage, choosing among credit cards, or using any number
of other consumer financial products.
Industry Support Organizations
- American Franchisee Association
The American Franchisee Association (AFA) is a national trade association of franchisees
and dealers. The AFA works to improve the industry of franchising while protecting
its members’ economic investments in their businesses.
- United States Department of Labor
The Department of Labor (DOL) fosters and promotes the welfare of the job seekers,
wage earners, and retirees of the United States by improving their working conditions,
advancing their opportunities for profitable employment, protecting their retirement
and health care benefits, helping employers find workers, strengthening free collective
bargaining, and tracking changes in employment, prices, and other national economic
- Federal Reserve Board
The Federal Reserve Board knows that well-educated consumers are the best consumer
protection in the market. These consumers know their rights and responsibilities,
and they use the information provided in disclosures to shop and compare. The Federal
Reserve Board maintains a consumer information web site with educational materials
related to the consumer protection regulations developed by the Board. In addition,
the Federal Reserve staff uses consumer surveys and focus groups to learn more about
what issues are important to consumers and to develop and test additional educational
- Investment Company Institute – Investor Education
The Investment Company Institute is the national association of U.S. investment
companies, including mutual funds, closed-end funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs),
and unit investment trusts (UITs). The fund industry is committed to helping ensure
that shareholders are fully informed when making decisions about their personal
finances and their futures. The Institute supports this goal with its Investor Education
series, public messages, partnerships, and through its participation in independent
and government-sponsored investor education programs.
- National Futures Association(NFA)
National Futures Association (NFA) is the industry wide, self-regulatory organization
for the U.S. futures industry. This organization strives to develop rules, programs
and services that safeguard market integrity, protect investors and help their Members
meet their regulatory responsibilities.
- Securities Industry and Financial Markets
(SIFMA) (formerly the Bond Market Association)
The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) hosts and education
website Investinginbonds.com. The site is a rich resource for people at every point
on the investing spectrum. It offers valuable information, real time data, important
indicators, as well as market news and commentary. Whether you are just beginning
to think about investing in bonds or you are a seasoned investor, this site can
answer your questions and provide you with the tools you need to invest in the bond
- Securities Investor Protection Corporation
SIPC is an important part of the overall system of investor protection in the United
States. While a number of federal, self-regulatory and state securities agencies
deal with cases of investment fraud, SIPC's focus is both different and narrow:
Restoring funds to investors with assets in the hands of bankrupt and otherwise
financially troubled brokerage firms. The Securities Investor Protection Corporation
was not chartered by Congress to combat fraud. In terms of its mission, when a brokerage
firm is closed due to bankruptcy or other financial difficulties and customer assets
are missing, SIPC steps in as quickly as possible and, within certain limits, works
to return customers' cash, stock and other securities. Without SIPC, investors at
financially troubled brokerage firms might lose their securities or money forever
or wait for years while their assets are tied up in court.
- Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) was created in 1953 as an independent
agency of the federal government to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests
of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain
and strengthen the overall economy of our nation. The organization recognizes that
small business is critical to our economic recovery and strength, to building America's
future, and to helping the United States compete in today's global marketplace.
Although SBA has grown and evolved through the years, the bottom line mission remains
the same. The SBA helps Americans start, build and grow businesses. Through an extensive
network of field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations,
SBA delivers its services to people throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, the
U. S. Virgin Islands and Guam.
- Stock Search International
– research old securities
Stock Search International is recognized as a valuable resource when it comes to
finding value in stocks and bonds no longer trading on current markets. The company
provides thorough research service in this field, as they track down 97% of all
the companies they investigate. For consumers’ convenience, Stock Search International
has gathered the results of four decades of research in a new online Database of
Companies No Longer Listed. This unique research tool features more than 40,000
updated reports including stock splits, stock dividends, name changes, mergers,
acquisitions, liquidation distributions and contacts to initiate a recovery.
Old Company Stock Research Service provides customers with a brief profile of old
companies whose original identities have been lost due to a change in name, merger,
acquisition, dissolution, reorganization, bankruptcy or charter cancellation, and
contact information for possible redeemable value. The resources used in determining
research reports includes a large proprietary library of old company stock and bond
research which includes information from the Marvyn Scudders Manuals, the Robert
D. Fisher Manuals, and the Herzog & Co., Inc's obsolete research service reports.