The Long Shadow of Jewish Persecution on Financial Decisions

61 Pages Posted: 16 Dec 2013 Last revised: 10 May 2017

See all articles by Francesco D'Acunto

Francesco D'Acunto

Boston College

Marcel Prokopczuk

Leibniz Universit├Ąt Hannover - Faculty of Economics and Management; University of Reading - ICMA Centre

Michael Weber

University of Chicago - Finance

Date Written: November 2015

Abstract

For centuries, Jews have been associated with financial services. We find that present-day households in German counties where Jewish persecution was higher in the Middle Ages and the Nazi period invest less in stocks, have lower savings in bank deposits, and are less likely to get a mortgage, but not to own a house. The forced migrations of the Ashkenazi communities across the German lands after the 11th century help assess the extent to which the e ffect of Jewish persecution on present-day financial decisions is causal. We document direct evidence from the field consistent with a persistent norm of distrust in finance, transmitted across generations, driving the eff ects. Instead, indirect evidence is inconsistent with current antisemitism, generalized trust, or supply-side forces explaining our results.

Keywords: Cultural Economics, Social Stereotypes, Household Finance, History & Finance

JEL Classification: D91, G11, J15, N33, Z11

Suggested Citation

D'Acunto, Francesco and Prokopczuk, Marcel and Weber, Michael, The Long Shadow of Jewish Persecution on Financial Decisions (November 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2368073 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2368073

Francesco D'Acunto (Contact Author)

Boston College ( email )

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States

Marcel Prokopczuk

Leibniz Universit├Ąt Hannover - Faculty of Economics and Management ( email )

Koenigsworther Platz 1
Hannover, 30167
Germany

University of Reading - ICMA Centre ( email )

Whiteknights Park
P.O. Box 242
Reading RG6 6BA
United Kingdom

Michael Weber

University of Chicago - Finance ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
345
Abstract Views
3,722
rank
87,154
PlumX Metrics