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Diane Publishing Books
Financial Education and the Debt Behavior of the Young
Meta Brown (au); Wilbert van der Klaauw (au); Jaya Wen (au); Basit Zafar (au)
Most U.S. households bear consumer debt, yet we have little understanding of the relationship between financial education and the debt behavior of U.S. consumers. This paper studies the effects of exposure to financial training on debt outcomes in early adulthood. It reveals significant effects of financial education on debt-related outcomes of youth. On the extensive margin, financial literacy education has a sizable impact on the propensity of youth having a credit report. Conditional on having a credit report, on the intensive margin, math and financial literacy education exposure reduces the incidence of adverse outcomes äóñ- such as accounts in collections and delinquent accounts äóñ- and reduces both the likelihood of youth carrying debt and their average debt balances. The results suggest that financial education programs, increasingly promoted by policymakers, are likely to have significant impacts on the financial decision-making of youth, but the effects depend on the content of these programs. Tables and figures. This is a print on demand report.
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