Andres Vaher

Teadusseminar "Savings goals matter - Cognitive constraints, retirement planning, and downstream economic behaviors" (Thomas Post)

Savings goals matter - Cognitive constraints, retirement planning, and downstream economic behaviors

Thomas Post (Maastricht University)

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We study how cognitive constraints relate to each distinct step of the planning and execution process for retirement, that is, individuals’ propensity to plan, savings goals set, and economic outcomes (wealth accumulation and portfolio choice). We find that different cognitive constraints play distinct roles: Higher advanced financial literacy (and quantitative reasoning ability) predicts a greater propensity to plan, while higher basic financial literacy and verbal cognition predict setting higher savings goals. Math-related abilities are not associated with savings goals in a systematic way. Furthermore, our evidence shows that the economic consequences of retirement planning depend on the earlier set savings goals. In comparison to non-planners, only planners with a higher savings goal (above the median) accumulate more wealth and are more likely to hold risky assets and private annuities. Our findings suggest that when crafting public policy to develop individuals’ retirement readiness, next to improving financial literacy, other targets could be to enhance cognitive skills and to support setting concrete savings goals by, for example, providing better access to planning relevant information and tools.

Meeting ID: 923 5942 4506

Passcode: 111852