At Santiago Exchange, we recognize that financial literacy is an essential tool for developing healthy, dynamic markets that contribute to countries’ sustainable development and improve people’s quality of life. The issue has recently gained considerable importance as the pandemic has dealt a heavy blow to personal, domestic and global activity, expectations and economies.
Given our role as facilitators of the securities market, financial literacy is a core component of our development strategy. In this spirit, we are continuously implementing initiatives to teach others about our market and related topics to help people actively and responsibly participate and make better investment decisions. We tailor our efforts to the needs of market players, potential investors, students and the general public.
In this way, we strive to contribute tangibly and responsibly to the development of market education in Chile, to help citizens become cognizant of the responsibilities, opportunities and risks associated with managing investment instruments.
As a sign of this commitment, we make information and learning tools available for everyone wishing to start engaging with our market or deepen their knowledge and participate more actively. We continuously invite the community to take part in the diverse initiatives we promote.
Our purpose is to encourage savings and responsible investment – to promote investment decision-making with a greater degree of information. We also strive to showcase the myriad investment alternatives available on the market, so that each person can choose the investment instrument that best fits their needs and expectations.
Over the past few years, we have witnessed how the world has changed. Without a doubt, the public health crisis has presented us with different challenges and opportunities to transform. In our particular case, it spurred us to turn our financial literacy programme into an online, interactive, multi-platform experience.
Financial literacy ecosystem
As a result, today we have a new online format that helps us break down geographic barriers, thereby facilitating the development of synchronous virtual talks with participants in the farthest reaches of the country, and even those in foreign markets. It gives us the chance to reach a much larger audience spanning professionals to students and, of course, the community at large.
This new internet-based financial literacy ecosystem is in response to current demands for information and knowledge, and also opens up doors for us to simultaneously reach the entire country, and go beyond its borders, with virtual talks and courses as well as new digital tools.
One product on this new platform is Online Trivia. It’s a game of questions and lifelines that teaches the main securities market concepts. Another exercise is the recently-launched free, online and on-demand course developed in partnership with Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso. It invites participants to understand the securities market’s role in our country's development.
We are aware that a lack of financial skills can have serious consequences on the long-term financial wellbeing of the country and its citizens. Therefore, in recent years we have developed a broad financial literacy programme with activities and content segmented for each stakeholder, addressing not only the community of actual or potential investors, but also those who take part in the market as professionals, supplying them with the tools and the knowledge with which to perform their roles to the highest industry standards. Examples are our virtual talks and courses in partnership with several institutions like Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez and the RiskMathics Institute.
This year, we once again held our traditional Investment Portfolio Contest, the leading securities market simulator that has been around for over 30 years. This initiative invites thousands of students from all around the country to be part of a virtual simulator to buy and sell stocks at real market prices from our country’s main market index, the S&P IPSA. The competition facilitates learning about how the stock market works and the diverse variables that impact it, and can be used to make investment decisions. It also helps us reach high school and undergraduate students, who are future market participants and decision makers.
At Santiago Exchange, we will continue working to develop initiatives like this and expand our partnerships as we understand that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Given this commitment, this year we will launch an online Financial Literacy hub, a digital platform that will bring together in one place courses, talks, games, study materials, seminars, educational videos and all content and initiatives that serve as a tool and a learning opportunity for the community.
Along with this, we are always looking for, promoting and participating in collaborative efforts with different entities, since we recognize that multidisciplinary alliances offer strengths and opportunities that are fundamental when developing high-impact initiatives that give us a greater reach. Under this same principle, in 2021 we decided to join the Financial Literacy Working Group organized by the Chilean Central Securities Depository (Depósito Central de Valores or DCV), which brings together diverse financial market players to work collaboratively on initiatives that help improve financial literacy in Chile.
The views, thoughts and opinions contained in this Focus article belong solely to the author and do not necessarily reflect the WFE’s policy position on the issue, or the WFE’s views or opinions.