personal finance

81 percent of Americans say they can handle their money well, but only 37 percent can pass a basic financial literacy test. Oops.

ESL is teaming up with Rochester Young Professionals and hosting a listening party at WXXI studios on September 29. Targeted to young professionals. the topics include how to build a better job, the trend of home buying among young professionals, and strategies for dealing with student loan debt. The debt piece is particularly timely given that in the fall, student loan repayments will kick in for many recent graduates. But wait: as the aforementioned study shows, it's not just about young adults. It's all of us. Our guests:

John Lanchester's fabulous piece in this week's New Yorker inspired this panel. His point is that the jargon of finance is harder than most industries' jargons, and yet it's vital that lay people try to learn it. Otherwise we cede enormous power to a small group of insiders. So how do we become literate? How do we learn the language of money? This we will try to make sense of with our panel:

Amit Batabyal, RIT professor of economics
John Ninfo, retired judge and consumer advocate
George Conboy, Brighton Securities
Rob Bradley, NorthLanding Financial Partners

It's decision day for high school seniors, and many will choose to take on student loans. Student loan debt has become an increasingly large load, and interest rates are often higher than the interest on mortgages. Is college worth the investment? How financially literate are students? We hear from a diverse panel, including Chuck Wade, financial consultant for Brighton Securities and John Serafine, lead counselor at Fairport High School.