The Impact of High School Financial Education on Financial Knowledge and Choices: Evidence from a Randomized Trial in Spain

56 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2018

See all articles by Olympia Bover

Olympia Bover

Banco de España - Research Department; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Laura Hospido

Banco de España - Research Department

Ernesto Villanueva

Banco de España - Research Department

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: January 31, 2018

Abstract

We study how a 10-hour course about personal finance delivered in compulsory secondary education affects a wide range of student’s outcomes over a three months horizon. The contents of the course covered budgeting, banking relationship and saving vehicles, but also awareness about future outcomes. To obtain reliable estimates, we conducted a randomized field experiment where 3,000 9th grade students coming from 78 Spanish high schools received financial education at different points of the academic year. Right after the course, performance in standardized tests of financial knowledge increased by 16% of one standard deviation, and treated youths were more likely to become involved in financial matters at home and showed a higher degree of patience in hypothetical saving choices. An incentivized saving task conducted three months after delivering the course suggests that treated youths displayed more patient choices at various interest rates and maturities than a control group of 10th graders. The results of higher performance in financial test scores and the higher degree of patient choices in the incentivized saving task among the treated are statistically significant in strata with students with a relatively more disadvantaged background.

Keywords: financial education, impact evaluation

JEL Classification: D14, D91, I22, J24

Suggested Citation

Bover, Olympia and Hospido, Laura and Villanueva, Ernesto, The Impact of High School Financial Education on Financial Knowledge and Choices: Evidence from a Randomized Trial in Spain (January 31, 2018). Banco de Espana Working Paper No. 1801. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3116054 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3116054

Olympia Bover (Contact Author)

Banco de España - Research Department ( email )

Alcala 50
28014 Madrid
Spain
+34 91 338 5979 (Phone)
+34 91 338 5678 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Laura Hospido

Banco de España - Research Department ( email )

Alcala 48
Madrid, 28014
Spain
+34 913385625 (Phone)
+34 913385678 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.laurahospido.com/

Ernesto Villanueva

Banco de España - Research Department ( email )

Alcala 50
28014 Madrid
Spain

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