Four in 10 US Kids Can Balance Books

First national test reveals exposure to economic ideas
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 8, 2007 9:12 PM CDT
Students at Ballard High School in Seattle walk through the halls between classes Thursday, Oct. 20, 2005. The Supreme Court on Thursday, June 28, 2007 rejected integration plans in two major public school...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A new national test reveals that four in 10 U.S. high school students can grasp economic concepts like tariffs, banking and investment—a result that one expert says is “not discouraging.” Results showed that three in five students can point to factors that increase national debt while 11% know how shifts in the unemployment rate impact income and spending, the Washington Post reports.

Inspired by an increase in high school economics courses, the test of more than 11,000 students showed that most of them had at least some exposure to economics. But the specter of racial inequality cast its shadow over the results, showing that white students fared more than twice as well as their black or Hispanic classmates.