Pensions and Risk Aversion: The Influence of Race, Ethnicity, and Class on Investor Behavior
28 Pages Posted: 11 Jan 2007
Defined Contribution plans have greatly expanded over the last two decades. Defined Contribution plans place the investment risk on employees. Employee investment decision making should be examined to determine whether those decisions are influenced by race, ethnicity and/or class. Empirical data show that investor behavior is greatly influenced by race, ethnicity and/or class. Blacks and Hispanics are far less likely to invest in the stock market than whites. Low-income whites are far more likely to invest in the stock market than blacks or Hispanics regardless of income. As a result, retirement account balances are the greatest for many white households and the least for black, Hispanic, and certain white households. This article explores those issues and suggests solutions that will allow employees to overcome their built-in biases and make wiser investment choices.
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