Money Watchers: The money test - News, Weather and Classifieds for Southern New England

Money Watchers: The money test

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The NBC 10 Money Watchers put a group of local teens to task, testing their knowledge of how much items cost and whether or not they know how to budget.

The teens, from the Providence Youth Center, had some financial coaching before.

We chose items teens eat, drink and use to test their knowledge including: a large cheese pizza from Pizza Hut, a gallon of milk, an iPhone and a movie ticket.

For a pizza that cost $10.80, the teens guessed between $7 and $11.

For a gallon of milk that cost $2.99, the teens guessed between $2.50 and $5.

An iPhone 5 with an AT&T contract, which costs $200, they guessed between $300 and $500.

And a ticket to see the movie "Argo" at the Providence Place Mall, which cost $10.75, the teens guessed it would cost between $8 and $10.50.

Recent surveys, like one done by Charles Schwab, show that nearly 60 percent of teens between the ages of 16 and 18 years old, claim to know how to budget their money. It also shows that more than 60 percent claim to know how to shop for the best deals. This comes as 80 percent of teens report believing that the recession is not over and their family has been impacted by it.

"I have a budget. A mental one. Just knowing what I want to buy and do I need it or do I just want it," one teen told NBC 10 News.

The teens we spoke with at the Providence Youth Center tell us they care about how they spend their money. They save. A few have checking accounts. Others have already started savings accounts.

"Basically we've been learning how not to be selfish and to think about what are choices which we make now how they will affect us in the future," a teen told NBC 10 News. "Like if we want something really bad we have to learn to discipline ourselves and wait for it instead of automatically wanting to go and spend all of our money out as soon as it gets in our hands."

"They're very impressive and definitely they've learned a lot here, but also serve as leaders for their peers in their community as well for those that may not know about financial literacy or have the skills that they do," said Ellen Darling of the Providence Youth Center.

  • Money Watchers

  • The NBC 10 Money Watchers are looking out for your bottom line.

    Frank Coletta, Alison Bologna, and Bill Rappleye are constantly making sure that your tax dollars are being used wisely.

    The NBC 10 Money Watchers are also looking for ways that you can save money and they are uncovering local business trends that impact unemployment. If you have a tip for the NBC 10 Money Watchers, email news@wjar.com.

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  • Frank Coletta

    Frank Coletta

    Frank Coletta anchors NBC 10 News Sunrise and NBC 10 News at Noon, and is also a member of the NBC 10 Money Watchers.
    Frank Coletta anchors NBC 10 News Sunrise and NBC 10 News at Noon.
  • Alison Bologna

    Alison Bologna

    After four years as an anchor and reporter in Boston, Alison Bologna returns to NBC 10 News to anchor its new 7 p.m. show with Dan Jaehnig and to report with Jim Taricani on the I-Team. She also anchors
    After four years as an anchor and reporter in Boston, Alison Bologna returns to NBC 10 News to anchor its new 7 p.m. show with Dan Jaehnig.
  • Bill Rappleye

    Bill Rappleye

    Bill gladly returns to Rhode Island airwaves following a 10-year absence. He broke into television news in New Bedford in the early 1980s, working as a photographer/reporter for cable television.
    Bill gladly returns to Rhode Island airwaves following a 10-year absence. He broke into television news in New Bedford in the early 1980s, working as a photographer/reporter for cable television.
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