40 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2008 Last revised: 17 Aug 2010
Date Written: August 13, 2010
This paper reports the results of a 2007 experiment testing if specific process simplification can foster increased take-up rates for savings products, particularly by low-to-moderate income (LMI) households. Tax refund recipients at certain H&R Block tax preparation offices were given the option to purchase U.S. Savings Bonds with their tax refunds, augmenting the tax-site savings options offered by Block. Those who received the savings bond offer were substantially more likely to purchase a savings product on-site than those who didn’t, even after controlling for client demographics. Much of this take-up was directed at intra-family gifting, or asset building on behalf of children.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Tufano, Peter, Just Keep My Money! Supporting Tax-Time Savings with US Savings Bonds (August 13, 2010). Harvard Business School Finance Working Paper No. 09-059. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1285385 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1285385