|Friday, January 21, 2011|
George Smaragdis, FINRA Foundation
Clare Graff, NFL
WASHINGTON — The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation and the National Football League (NFL) announced today that they are working together to help incoming NFL players spot and avoid investment fraud and begin their playing careers by making informed financial decisions. This joint FINRA Foundation/NFL initiative will reach prospective NFL players and their families as they prepare for two key events:
Players will learn how to choose the right financial professional and how to do a background check. Players also will learn about the risks of taking on debt. NFL Player Development and NFL Security, in collaboration with the FINRA Foundation, have launched this initiative to reach players at these events through 60- minute presentations, along with information booths in main traffic areas that will provide FINRA Foundation and NFL resources.
"We are pleased to be working with the FINRA Foundation to provide our prospective players with the tools to build a solid financial future," said Adolpho Birch, NFL Senior Vice President of Labor Policy and Player Development. "It's never too early to learn, and I am pleased that, together with NFL Security, we will be able to reach these players and their families at this important time in their lives."
The FINRA Foundation will present its Outsmarting Investment Fraud (OIF) curriculum at each of these events to both players and their parents. A key feature of the OIF curriculum is an explanation of the psychological persuasion tactics con artists use to get their victims to make emotional rather than logical investment decisions. For players, understanding these psychological tactics and how they can be used against investors can help them to avoid becoming a con artist's next victim. The educational curriculum that will be delivered at these NFL events has been tested and shown to reduce susceptibility to investment fraud by over 50 percent among participants.
"It is critically important that players make informed financial decisions at the beginning of their careers," said Rick Ketchum, Chairman of the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. "Working with the NFL, we hope to reach these players and give them the information and insight they need to avoid financial pitfalls."
NFL Player Development and NFL Security are working together to tackle the problems posed by a lack of knowledge about how to manage the financial advisor selection process. The NFL's work with the FINRA Foundation will bring needed resources and tools to players and their families so that they can protect themselves from fraudulent and deceptive practices.
The FINRA Investor Education Foundation is the largest foundation in the United States dedicated to investor education. Its mission is to provide investors with high-quality, easily accessible information and tools to better understand the markets and the basic principles of saving and investing.
NFL Player Development prepares and supports players mentally, emotionally and physically for life on the gridiron and during their transition to post-football careers. Through programming like NFL Prep, NFL Life, and NFL Next, the NFL Player Development department assists players in adjusting to life within the NFL, while challenging them to prepare for their next careers after their football-playing days are through.