More than half of states don’t require financial education, and it shows.
The Most and Least Financially Literate States
Americans still have a lot to learn about managing their money.
If given a letter grade, Virginia, the state with the most financially-versed residents, would score a D+. That's according to the results of a recent study on financial literacy conducted by personal finance site WalletHub. 
Six out of 10 of the most financially literate states in the country all have required financial education for high school students.  Meanwhile, the 10 least states don’t mandate such courses.
Click or swipe through to see which are the most and least financially literate in the country...
This state is the most financially literate in the U.S., according to WalletHub’s study. It has the second-highest rate of financial knowledge and education, which makes sense: the median household income here is almost $70,000. And 38 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree or higher. WalletHub’s analysis showed that financial literacy increases with income, educational attainment, and age.
Overall score: 68.3
Utah is ranked second in overall financial literacy. Like Virginia, Utah requires high school students to take a personal finance course and, like Virginia, it’s been rated one of the most effective in the U.S. at actually preparing students to deal with money.  The median income in this state tops $65,000 and 32 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Overall score: 67.97
3. New Hampshire
The third most financially literate state also requires high school students to take a course about personal finance. Here, the median age is about 43 years old – five years older than the national median. The median income is $71,305, and 36 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree. This state has all the makings of one that’s good with money.
Overall score: 67.36
4. New Jersey
No. 4 on the list, New Jersey also offers personal finance courses to high schoolers, and even goes a step further and offers financial literacy resources on its Department of Education website, so people can access information from a trusted source at any time. This state’s median household income is the highest yet on the list, at $76,475 – that’s about $20,000 higher than the national median.
Overall score: 66.79
Minnesota is the first on WalletHub’s list that doesn’t require any sort of personal finance education for high school students. But residents of this state performed really well on WalletHub’s own financial literacy test, and Minnesota makes it into the top five list of states with adults who have rainy day funds. And weirdly, it has the highest number of households that do not have a bank account.
Overall score: 65.72
Maryland ranks sixth on states that are well-versed in finance. It requires students to learn about personal finance, but does not insist that school districts offer standalone high school courses. Its median household income is $78,000, average age is 39, and 39 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Overall score: 65.68
Yet another northeastern state makes the list of top 10 financially literate states (a list that doesn’t include a single southern state). Maine is an outlier on this list because it doesn’t require a standalone high school personal finance course and is not one of the top 10 states in the U.S. with the highest income. But the state requires personal finance curriculum to be integrated into history courses, and offers extensive optional financial literacy resources.
Overall score: 65.68
Even though it made the list of top 10 states with the best personal finance education, Colorado doesn’t require any course to teach This state has a younger median age than the others in the top 10, but 40 percent of the population has at least a bachelor’s degree, and its median household income is still $65,000.
Overall score: 64.3
Colorado is also the fourth most expensive state to live in, according to previous Debt.com reporting.
9. North Dakota
North Dakota has residents with both good financial literacy and good credit scores. It requires high school students to take some sort of financial course, whether it's integrated into another curriculum or a standalone class. The state's median household income is $61,000.
Overall score: 63.68
10. New York
New York high school students must take a half-year course in economics to graduate. The state also has a median household income of $65,000, and about 35 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree or higher. All of this combines to mean good things for how financially literate the state is.
Overall score: 63.02
11. 10. Rhode Island
The state ranks among the lowest on WalletHub’s financial literacy study, even though its median household income is well over the country’s, and 33 percent of its population has a bachelor’s degree as well. Those are usually factors that help increase someone’s financial literacy, but unlike other states with similar demographics, Rhode Island does not require that high schoolers take a personal finance course.
Overall score: 56.15
12. 9. South Dakota
South Dakota is among some of the states with the most lax financial literacy requirements for students. It doesn’t require a personal finance course for high schoolers. It also has a fairly young and uneducated population: its median age is 37, and 28 percent of the population holds a bachelor’s degree.
Overall score: 56.06
13. 8. Hawaii
Hawaii is another state that ranks reasonably high in terms of income and education, but has very limited requirements for personal finance education. It doesn’t require that personal finance courses be offered, or even that the subject be taught in a history course.
Overall score: 55.82
Hawaii is also the most expensive state to move to, according to previous Debt.com reporting.
14. 7. Kentucky
People from Kentucky performed among the worst on WalletHub’s financial literacy test, which helped bump them so far down the list. But the state also does not require any personal finance courses. Just 23 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree, and its median household income is $46,500.
Overall score: 55.47
15. 6. Oklahoma
A high number of adults in Oklahoma borrow from non-bank lenders, and a low number have rainy day funds. And of course, the state does not require a personal finance course and leaves the decision about whether or not to teach it up to local school districts. Median household income is just under $50,000, and 25 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree.
Overall score: 55.45
16. 5. New Mexico
New Mexico doesn’t require personal finance courses for graduation, although it does offer them as electives. This is a state that has both a low financial literacy score from WalletHub and low overall credit scores. The median income is about $47,000.
Overall score: 54.98
17. 4. Delaware
Delaware is another state with a reasonably high median household income and level of education, but its residents have the least sustainable spending habits of any other state in the country. That likely explains their low credit scores, and isn’t helped by the lack of required personal finance education in schools.
Overall score: 54.83
18. 3. Mississippi
Mississippi offers personal finance as an elective for students, but not a requirement. Just 22 percent of its population has a bachelor’s degree, and it has the highest share in the country of adults borrowing from non-bank lenders. It has almost the lowest rate of adults without rainy-day funds.
Overall score: 54.58
19. 2. Alaska
Alaska is a state of high earners, with its median income nearing $80,000. It’s in the top 10 states for income, but lowest for financial literacy. It does not require any personal finance concepts to be taught in schools.
Overall score: 53.11
20. 1. Louisiana
Finally, the state that’s the worst with money: Louisiana. It doesn’t require a personal finance course, and even the civics course with personal finance curriculum isn’t required for graduation anymore. Residents performed poorly on WalletHub’s own financial literacy test. Plus, it has one of the lowest high school graduation rates in the country.
Overall score: 51.01
This article by Cassidy Alexander was originally published on Debt.com.
Published by Debt.com, LLC