A Financial Sophistication Proxy for the Survey of Consumer Finances
Sandra J. Huston
Texas Tech University
Michael S. Finke
Texas Tech University; University of Missouri at Columbia - Department of Finance
Hyrum L. Smith
Virginia Tech - Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics
August 27, 2011
The Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) contains detailed U.S. household balance sheet information and is frequently used to study outcomes in household finance. There is no variable that explicitly measures financial sophistication in the SCF. We propose a factor score composed of four questions that can serve as a proxy of financial sophistication to correct a possible important omitted variable bias. Results using the sophistication factor show how controlling for financial sophistication provides a more precise estimate of the marginal effects of control variables such as education and race.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 11
Keywords: Survey of Consumer Finances, household finance, financial literacy, financial sophistication
JEL Classification: D12, D14working papers series
Date posted: August 28, 2011
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