Building Financial and Health Literacy at Older Ages: The Role of Online Information

43 Pages Posted: 7 May 2018 Last revised: 31 Jul 2018

See all articles by Hessam Bavafa

Hessam Bavafa

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business

Junhao Liu

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business

Anita Mukherjee

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business

Date Written: July 20, 2018

Abstract

Improving financial and health literacy is an important step in reducing economic vulnerability in older age, yet the means by which individuals accumulate these types of human capital remains an open question. This paper evaluates the impact of online search activities on the levels of financial and health literacy. We find that using the internet for such information increases literacy significantly: doing so frequently (versus not at all) increases financial literacy by 16 percent, and health literacy by 12 percent. Our results are robust to alternative measures of financial literacy. They are also robust to an instrumental variable approach using other web skills such as email use to proxy for how individuals use the internet.

Keywords: financial literacy; health literacy; internet use; technology adoption; web skills

JEL Classification: D14, D83, D91, A20, I10

Suggested Citation

Bavafa, Hessam and Liu, Junhao and Mukherjee, Anita, Building Financial and Health Literacy at Older Ages: The Role of Online Information (July 20, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3165776 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3165776

Hessam Bavafa

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business ( email )

975 University Ave
4284C Grainger Hall
Madison, WI 53706
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://bus.wisc.edu/faculty/hessam-bavafa

Junhao Liu

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business ( email )

975 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53706
United States

Anita Mukherjee (Contact Author)

University of Wisconsin - Madison - School of Business ( email )

975 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53706
United States

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

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
94
Abstract Views
579
rank
274,442
PlumX Metrics