Current Financial Services Information Activities
Outline of the Financial Services Information Activities
With the primary purpose of enlightening the public regarding the importance of basic financial and economic knowledge related to daily life, the Central Council has been engaged in nationwide promotion, mainly public relations activities, since 1983. These activities have three aims:
- To provide financial and economic information, i.e. disseminate basic financial knowledge related to daily life in order to promote a healthy household economy. In recent years, many changes have been seen in the financial area such as financial liberalization and internationalization. Thus, the public has a greater need of accurate financial and economic knowledge than before. The Central Council has been active via publications, newspapers, videotapes, and internet.
- To encourage the drafting of life plans. As Japanese society is aging at an unprecedented high tempo, it has become increasingly necessary that each individual make a life plan, which should ultimately help maintain and improve sound living conditions and a healthy economy. From this viewpoint, the Central Council holds various events to inculcate the importance of life planning, as well as providing consulting services regarding life planning.
- To disseminate pecuniary education. In order not only to keep a healthy family budget but also to ensure the sound economy of the country, it is important to teach children the value of money. Also, especially the widespread permeation of credit cards and consumer loan facility, it has become more necessary to impart to children some basic knowledge about loans. Recently, the Central Council and Local Committees have held activities for young generation, together with schools, families, and communities, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.
As described above, the practical goal of today's financial services information activities is to help the healthy and rational household management of the public to ensure both a healthy family budget and also a sound national economy.
Financial Services Information Activities
Financial services information activities can be classified roughly into: (i) nation-wide activities, mainly by the Central Council; and (ii) local activities, mainly by Local Committees.
(A) Nation-wide Activities
- (a) Newspapers, videotapes
The Central Council actively supplies to the press and magazines a variety of information related to financial services. It also produces videotapes designed to relate social education and better living.
- (b) Publications
The Central Council compiles various publications and reference materials that give an easy access to financial and economic information.
- (c) Website
The Central Council provides following financial services information through its website, launched in October 1997;
--basic financial knowledge related to daily life
--information on drafting life plans
--data concerning "Public Opinion Survey on Financial Assets of the Households".
- (d) Life Planning Computer Consultation Service
To assist the public in drafting individual life plans or to judge how appropriate a plan is, a free computer consultation service is available.
- (f) Survey
In order to ascertain the actual situation, "Public Opinion Survey on the Financial Assets of the Households" is regularly conducted.
(B) Local Activities
- (a) To foster and strengthen local life planning and financial services information activities
Local Committees designate "Study Group on Financial and Economic Matters" as grassroots organizations comprising 50-100 persons and provide guidance through discussion meetings and the distibution of financial services information materials.
- (b)To foster "Study Adviser on Financial and Economic Matters" and to cooperate with related groups
Local Committees appoint "Study Adviser on Financial and Economic Matters" to be at the forefront of financial services information activities, requesting them to: (i) foster Study Groups and give guidance, and (ii) guide the public in their life planning and pecuniary education. Additionally, in close cooperation with government offices and leaders of various organizations responsible for social education, Local Committees seek to expand the financial services information activities.
- (c) Activities for youth and children
Local Committees hold discussion meetings for the young to promote life planning and a healthy view of money and goods. For children, model schools for pecuniary education1/ are designated to promote a healthy view of money and goods.
1/ Pecuniary education is given in model schools for kindergartens, elementary and junior high schools.