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Delivering Conditional Cash Transfers Via Savings Accounts: Default and Accounting Mechanisms

a PSC Research Project

Investigator:   Manuela Angelucci

Our study aims to test whether and how mental accounting and default mechanisms improve the ability of poor households to save in the formal financial system, cope with negative shocks, and invest in health and education. We are also interested in testing whether making the financial lives of the poor easier has an effect on their cognitive system, and if this, in turn, affects their welfare. Designing savings tools that help the poor to save is a global challenge that could benefit many. The Mexican antipoverty program Oportunidades delivers conditional cash transfers to its beneficiaries via direct deposits into savings accounts. We plan to exploit this key feature of the program to evaluate the potential of default and mental accounting mechanisms for a vulnerable population. We will conduct a randomized controlled trial at the locality level with three treatment arms.

Funding Period: 06/01/2014 to 05/31/2015

Country of Focus: Mexico

Progenitor Project:

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