American Library Association, Investor Protection Trust kick off Investor Education @ your library® initiative

Contact: Larra Clark, ALA, 312-280-5043
Cheri Meyer, IPT, 202-775-2113
For Immediate Release
March 27, 2006 

American Library Association, Investor Protection Trust kick off Investor Education @ your library® initiative

Free investment seminars to begin in libraries nationwide

The first in a nationwide series of investment seminars will take place tomorrow at the District of Columbia Public Library – officially launching the Investor Education @ your library® program sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and the Investor Protection Trust (IPT).

Investor Education @ your library® is a national public education and awareness effort to help individuals make informed investment decisions. According to an IPT/Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) "Investor Survival Skills Survey" conducted last December, the vast majority of American investors do not possess important "investor survival skills" needed to build their savings into a retirement nest egg.

"Only 17 percent of respondents correctly answered a sufficient number of questions on knowledge and behavior to pass our test," says IPT CEO Don Blandin. "That tells us that we need to do more to ensure that consumers have accurate and reliable financial and investment information. Libraries are the perfect venue for making that information available."

Twenty library systems around the country will offer a free seminar on investment education, developed and conducted by the Evelyn Brust Foundation. The non-commercial seminar consists of a 90-minute session focusing on the process of investing – including the basics of stocks, bonds and mutual funds, as well as saving for college and retirement. Representatives from State Securities Regulators’ Offices also will be on hand to address investor protection and fraud issues.

The seminar will be followed by optional, one-on-one counseling sessions with licensed professionals on financial goals and objectives, retirement strategies and asset allocation. The sessions will feature a "temperament survey" based on the Keirsey Temperament Sorter®, which classifies people into four basic temperament groups: Guardians, Artisans, Rationals, and Idealists. According to IPT, recent research suggests that temperaments have much to do with investment behavior and risk tolerance – and can be modified through education.

"Libraries have always provided patrons with information and resources to help them make good decisions for themselves and for their families," adds ALA President Michael Gorman. "Libraries are places of opportunity for all people."

Libraries involved in the Investor Education @ your library® program include: Anchorage (Alaska) Municipal Libraries; Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System; Bowling Green (Ky.) Public Library; D.C. Public Library; Des Moines (Iowa) Public Library; Detroit Public Library; Fletcher Free Library (Burlington, Vt.); Free Library of Philadelphia; Jacksonville (Fla.) Public Library; Kansas City (Mo.) Public Library; Monroe County Public Library (Bloomington, Ind.); New York Public Library; Norfolk (Va.) Public Library; Onondaga County Public Library (Syracuse, N.Y.); Parmly Billings Public Library (Billings, Mont.); Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County (N.C.); Sacramento (Calif.) Public Library; SiouxLand Libraries (Sioux Falls, S.D.); Tuscaloosa (Ala.) Public Library; and Wichita (Kan.) Public Library.

Participating libraries also have received materials to enhance their investor education collections, including a series of investment booklets from IPT and Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc.; a resource bibliography prepared by the Reference and User Services Association, a division of the ALA; and a DVD set of IPT’s national "MoneyTrack" series, a new 13-part public television series devoted to helping consumers learn to invest successfully and get control of their personal finances.

For more information, check out the  ALA Web site. Click on "Events" to find an investment seminar in your area and "Resources" for recommended books, Web sites and booklets.

Investor Education @ your library® is part of ALA’s Campaign for America’s Libraries, a national, multi-year public awareness and advocacy campaign about the value of libraries and librarians in the 21st century. IPT is a Founding Partner of the Campaign.

Founded in 1876, the American Library Association is "the voice of America’s libraries." Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.

The Investor Protection Trust ( www.investorprotection.org), founded in 1993, is a non-profit organization established to educate the public about the importance of investing wisely for retirement and to increase awareness of the critical need for financial security.