Technical Report Changing saving and investment behavior: the impact of financial literacy training and reminders on micro-businesses

ABEBE, Girum  ,  TEKLE, Biruk  ,  MANO, Yukichi

2015-12-08 , Hitotsubashi Institute for Advanced Study, Hitotsubashi University
In developing countries, savings is an important financial tool, particularly for micro-business with limited access to credit. However, micro-entrepreneurs often undersave, even when they have some surplus and the desire to save may be because of a knowledge gap and behavioral biases. We employed an experimental approach relaxing these savings constraints to explore the effects of providing financial literacy training and reminders to micro-entrepreneurs in Ethiopia. While financial literacy training alone seemed ineffective, the reminders significantly increased the savings-to-sales ratio by 54.5%, the percentage of business proceeds reinvested back to business by 91.0 %, and the percentage of savings goal achieved by 116%. Joint treatment significantly increased the percentage of savings goal achieved by 66.5% and deposit in an ordinary bank account by 84%. Our results confirm earlier findings that savings can be limited by attention, whereas how entrepreneurs manage savings depends on their levels of financial literacy [151 words].

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