Incompatible European Partners? Cultural Predispositions and Household Financial Behavior

Forthcoming in Management Science

Posted: 25 Apr 2016

See all articles by Michael Haliassos

Michael Haliassos

Goethe University Frankfurt - House of Finance; Goethe University Frankfurt - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration; CEPR; NETSPAR; Goethe University Frankfurt - Institute for Monetary and Financial Stability (IMFS)

Thomas Jansson

Sveriges Riksbank - Research Division

Yigitcan Karabulut

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management; CEPR

Multiple version iconThere are 6 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 21, 2016

Abstract

The recent influx of migrants and refugees into Europe and elsewhere raises questions as to whether migrant behavior reflects cultural predispositions and whether assimilation through exposure to host institutions can be expected. The paper focuses on financial behavior and uses high-quality administrative data on migrants and refugees to Sweden. It uncovers differences across cultural groups in how behavior relates to household characteristics, and shows that differences diminish with exposure to host country institutions, even for large cultural distances. Interestingly, robust cultural classification of European countries based on genetic distance or on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions fails to identify a single ‘southern’ culture but points to a ‘northern’ culture. Our results also have implications for the potential of European institutional harmonization, exogenously imposed during the fiscal crisis, to alleviate cultural differences in financial behavior.

Keywords: household finance, portfolio choice, culture

JEL Classification: G11, E21

Suggested Citation

Haliassos, Michael and Jansson, Thomas and Karabulut, Yigitcan, Incompatible European Partners? Cultural Predispositions and Household Financial Behavior (April 21, 2016). Forthcoming in Management Science, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2768766

Michael Haliassos (Contact Author)

Goethe University Frankfurt - House of Finance

Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 3
PF H32
Frankfurt am Main, 60323
Germany

Goethe University Frankfurt - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration ( email )

Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 3
PF H32
Frankfurt am Main, D-60323
Germany

CEPR

London
United Kingdom

NETSPAR ( email )

P.O. Box 90153
Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

Goethe University Frankfurt - Institute for Monetary and Financial Stability (IMFS) ( email )

Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 1
Frankfurt, 60323
Germany

Thomas Jansson

Sveriges Riksbank - Research Division ( email )

S-103 37 Stockholm
Sweden

Yigitcan Karabulut

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management ( email )

Adickesallee 32-34
Frankfurt am Main, 60322
Germany

CEPR ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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