People who are bad at math can at least take comfort in one finding from the study: Struggling with math doesn't indicate lower intelligence. Numerical ability doesn't seem to be tied to IQ.
Still, the study adds to a growing body of evidence suggesting that the ability to make sound financial decisions is linked to the ability to understand math and be comfortable with certain calculations.
"There's evidence that financial literacy affects behavior in other dimensions, very similar to this one," said Lusardi, who is campaigning to get more schools to add financial literacy to their curricula. "It's important for savings for retirement and for paying off credit cards, and we see the links to financial literacy in those behaviors as well. These things really do matter."
For more on financial literacy and why it matters, head to the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
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