Financial Literacy and Financial Sophistication Among Older Americans
Olivia S. Mitchell
University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
George Washington University - Department of Accountancy; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
November 4, 2009
Pension Research Council Working Paper No. 25
This paper analyzes new data on financial literacy and financial sophistication from the 2008 Health and Retirement Study. We show that financial literacy is lacking among older individuals and for the first time explore additional questions on financial sophistication which proves even scarcer. For this sample of older respondents over the age of 55, we find that people lack even a rudimentary understanding of stock and bond prices, risk diversification, portfolio choice, and investment fees. In view of the fact that individuals are increasingly required to take on responsibility for their own retirement security, this lack of knowledge has serious implications.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 32
Date posted: November 4, 2009 ; Last revised: November 26, 2011
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