Financial Decision Making and Cognition in a Family Context

by James P. Smith, John McArdle, Robert Willis

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Abstract

In this paper, the authors studied the association of cognitive traits and in particular numeracy of both spouses on financial outcomes of the family. They found significant effects, particularly for numeracy for financial and non-financial respondents alike, but much larger effects for the financial decision maker in the family. They also examined who makes these financial decisions in the family and why. Once again, cognitive traits such as numeracy were an important component of that decision with larger effects of numeracy for husbands compared to wives.

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