Why aren’t women more financially literate?

September 22, 2009

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Annamaria Lusardi, Olivia Mitchell, and Vilsa Curto find:

There is now fairly robust evidence confirming that women do not do well in financial calculations and do not have a firm grasp of inflation and risk diversification.

I’d be fascinated to see whether this held true across cultures — does it apply in Japan, for instance, where women generally hold the pursestrings? And in any event, why should this result even hold true in the US? I can’t think of any good intuitive reason why men should be more financially literate than women, and certainly the experience of microfinance lenders is generally that women are much more responsible, when it comes to money, than men. There’s something very odd going on here: all theories gratefully accepted.


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