Who Intends to Become Financially Literate? Insights from the Theory of Planned Behaviour

36 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2019 Last revised: 31 Dec 2019

See all articles by Francesco C. Billari

Francesco C. Billari

Bocconi University - Department of Policy Analysis and Public Management

Monica Gentile

CONSOB (Commissione Nazionale per le SocietĂ  e la Borsa)

Nadia Linciano

Commissione Nazionale per le Societa e la Borsa (CONSOB)

F. Saita

Independent

Date Written: November 25, 2019

Abstract

Despite the importance that policy-makers acknowledge to financial education, little is known about the demand for financial literacy (especially among the least literate individuals). We here build on the social-psychological framework of the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) to study the intention to learn more about savings and investments as a function of attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioural control, also controlling for individual background factors, including psychological traits. We develop a novel TPB-based module for the CONSOB 2018 Survey on financial investments by Italian households, administered to 1,601 individuals. Analyses of this module, also through structural equation models, show that attitudes, subjective norms and perceived behavioural control are significant determinants of intentions to learn more about savings and investments, as predicted by TPB. Differences in attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioural control contribute to financial literacy gaps for women and less literate individuals in general. In analogy to other fields, interventions in the area of financial literacy should also target the determinants of individuals’ intentions, especially for adults that are generally involved in financial education programs on a voluntary basis.

Keywords: financial literacy, Theory of Planned Behaviour, financial education, financial knowledge

JEL Classification: G40, G41, G53

Suggested Citation

Billari, Francesco C. and Gentile, Monica and Linciano, Nadia and Saita, F., Who Intends to Become Financially Literate? Insights from the Theory of Planned Behaviour (November 25, 2019). CONSOB Working Papers No. 88, November 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3494984 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3494984

Francesco C. Billari

Bocconi University - Department of Policy Analysis and Public Management ( email )

Via Roentgen 1
Milan, 20136
Italy

Monica Gentile

CONSOB (Commissione Nazionale per le SocietĂ  e la Borsa) ( email )

Roma 00198
Italy

Nadia Linciano (Contact Author)

Commissione Nazionale per le Societa e la Borsa (CONSOB) ( email )

Roma 00198
Italy

F. Saita

Independent

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