The youngest millennials and Gen Z are divided by the fact that Gen Z does not remember 9/11, according to an expert on millennials.

Millennials and Gen Z are also separated by differences defined by technology and mobile adoption: Gen Z doesn't know a world without either.

The aftermath of 9/11 created two generations with different financial habits. They are also influenced by how they experienced the Great Recession.

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There are several differences between millennials and Gen Z, but they all begin with the key event dividing them: 9/11.

That's according to research conducted by the Center for Generational Kinetics(CGK), which posits that 9/11 is a generation-defining moment for .

"This is our 'Where were you when?' moment, similar to baby boomers and the JFK assassination," Jason Dorsey, a consultant, researcher of millennials, and president of CGK, told Business Insider. For a generation-defining moment to stick, he said, it must create a deep emotional connection, often associated with fear and uncertainty about the future.

"We were able to see that in order for 9/11 to be a generation-defining moment you had to remember it, feel the emotion of it, and the uncertainty of what was going to happen next," Dorsey said, adding that Gen Z is too young to remember 9/11 -- most of the generation wasn'teven born yet.

"Those born from 1996 on do not remember 9/11, and certainly not in the way those even two or three years older do," he said. "Other than the defining moment, everything else tends to be more trendlike, and you can see more of a path of continued change from millennials to Gen Z, including technology, mobile adoption, etc."

Ongoing research, he said, will help the organization discover if, when, or how these continued changes affect a generation that has grown up with these...

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