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Money Smart Press Releases

FDIC Announces Release of Vietnamese Language Version of Money Smart Program

MS-06-2004 (2-11-2004)
Media Contact:
Rosemary George (202) 898-6530

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) today announced the release of the Vietnamese language version of its adult financial education curriculum, Money Smart. The program is now available in five languages: English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese. A press conference in Houston, TX, was one of three held today nationwide, with other press conferences in Los Angeles and Washington, DC.

“Learning how to save and manage money is essential to becoming financially independent and achieving the dream of owning your own home,” said FDIC Chairman Don Powell. “But it doesn’t end there, because financial independence and homeownership are essential to safer, stronger communities and a more prosperous America.”

“The Combined Metropolitan Statistical Area (CMSA) of Houston-Galveston-Brazoria is home to the third largest Vietnamese population in the U.S., with the largest percentage residing in the Houston area,” said FDIC Regional Director John Carter. “It’s fitting that we celebrate the release of the Vietnamese version of Money Smart here. The Vietnamese community as a whole places a high value on education. Money Smart will help people learn to make better financial decisions and build a more secure future for themselves and their families.”

According to Michael CaoMy Nguyen, President of VN TeamWork/Hiep Luc and a member of the Houston Asset Building Coalition, “We used to live in very difficult economic situations in Vietnam that taught us how to make money to survive. As we all know, making money is difficult, but saving money is even more difficult, and now with Money Smart no one will have to face the difficulty anymore.” VN TeamWork/Hiep Luc is a nonprofit community-based organization which strives to search for new and better ways to help Vietnamese immigrants integrate with other communities.

The Vietnamese version of Money Smart has been enthusiastically received by non-profit and community-based groups, financial institutions, and government agencies that are working together. Among the local key partners in this ongoing effort are the Alliance for Multicultural Community Services, Compass Bank, Gulf Coast Community Services Association, Housing Opportunities of Houston, Inc., Houston Asset Building Coalition, Houston’s Joint City/County Commission on Children, JPMorgan Chase Bank, MetroBank, N.A., Tradition Bank, United Guaranty Residential Insurance Company, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and VN TeamWork/Hiep Luc.

The FDIC is working with banks that serve the Houston area and want to offer the Money Smart program in their communities. MetroBank, N.A. will sponsor a Vietnamese Money Smart Train-the-Trainer session on March 4th at the bank. To register, or for more information, call 713-630-3204. Tradition Bank, a member of the Houston Asset Building Coalition, will hold Vietnamese Money Smart classes as part of the services at their VITA site this tax season.

The FDIC’s Money Smart program recently received the prestigious 2003 Service to America Medal. Nationwide, over 100,000 people have already received instruction in basic financial education through Money Smart during the past three years, with a goal of teaching one million people by the end of 2007. The curriculum is an integral part of efforts to address the issues of predatory lending and low-income communities’ lack of access to mainstream banking services.

The Money Smart program is a set of 10 instructor-led training modules that covers topics such as understanding credit, preparing a personal budget, and assessing the costs and benefits of consumer and home loans. Each module includes a comprehensive guide for instructors and a take-home booklet containing highlights and resource material for class participants. Anyone interested in financial education can use Money Smart. The materials are free, easily reproduced, and have no copyright restrictions. For more information, or to order Money Smart, visit the Money Smart section of the FDIC’s Web site at

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Congress created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 1933 to restore public confidence in the nation’s banking system. The FDIC insures deposits at the nation’s 9,237 banks and savings associations and it promotes the safety and soundness of these institutions by identifying, monitoring and addressing risks to which they are exposed. The FDIC receives no federal tax dollars – insured financial institutions fund its operations.

FDIC press releases and other information are available on the Internet at or contact the FDIC’s Public Information Center (877-275-3342 or 202-416-6940).

Last Updated 2/11/2004

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