Research: Working Paper Series

Through the G53 Network Working Paper Series, our members can share their research findings and make them available prior to publication in academic journals. In this section, you can find the research that Network members are developing. The aim of the series is to tackle the most pressing questions and to provide rigorous evidence-based research.

Is School-Based Financial Education Effective? Immediate and Long-Lasting Impacts on Students and Teachers

Veronica Frisancho

Abstract: This paper studies the potential of school-based financial education. Relying on a large-scale experiment in Peru, the study identifies significant improvements on financial skills. Novel credit bureau data uncovers long-lasting effects on financial behavior: three years later, treated students are less likely to have negative records due to unpaid/delinquent bills or credit card statements. Teachers accrue financial literacy gains that double those identified among students and they become more likely to save, particularly through formal channels. Two years after the intervention, teachers borrow more from banks and reduce their delinquency rates, while parents transition away from expensive sources of credit. 

Crowdsourcing Peer Information to Change Spending Behavior

Francesco D’Acunto, Alberto G. Rossi, and Michael Weber

Abstract: Consumers might overestimate optimal spending if forming beliefs based on others’ spending, because others’ conspicuous consumption is more visible than the rest of their consumption. If true, information about others’ overall spending should change beliefs and choice. For a test, we provide crowdsourced information about anonymous “peer groups” to users of a FinTech app. Users converge to peers, especially when peer groups are more informative. For identification, we compare similar users matched to different peers based on sharp thresholds. A randomized control trial on a non-selected population supports external validity. Our results inform the design of robo-advisors for spending.