Written By: Radha Bhattacharya and Andrew Gill
We surveyed high-school students in Southern California to investigate whether there is an improvement in financial attitudes from eight class periods of financial literacy intervention in a high-school economics course. We examine whether the money management (MM) and financial investing (FI) components of financial instruction influence attitudes differently and whether they each influence attitudes beyond a standard economics course. We find that the MM treatment influences being thrifty and delaying gratification. Both treatments increase risk-taking behavior, with neither treatment being more important than the other. Within the confines of our experiment, exposure to economics per se did not influence any of the financial attitudes, pointing to the need for financial education to inculcate healthy financial attitudes in high school children.