Ian's list

Top picks from the web on money and your life, from ING economist Ian Bright – February 17, 2014

If you start university, it pays to finish

If you start university, it pays to finish

Even students struggling to pass university can get a financial payoff if they manage to get their qualification, research on college education in the United States shows. Academics Philip Oreopoulos and Uros Petronijevic compared the average earnings of university graduates with non-graduates and found there is a monetary benefit (even after accounting for the cost of tuition) in doing a college degree. Furthermore, even those who obtained only a marginal pass benefited. The pair suggested one factor potential students might want to examine is the completion rates for different courses and universities.

Playing it safe?

Playing it safe?

Although there has been much discussion about female investors tending to take less financial risk than male ones since the global financial crisis, a study cited by The Economist suggests it is not so simple. It says that although differences in how men and women invest do exist, a report found that “when factors such as education, employment or financial circumstances are taken into account, the discrepancies diminish”. Furthermore, it highlights how strong emotional influences can affect investing habits of both sexes.

Human herding

Human herding

Herd behaviour can be a way people try to protect themselves from accusations of stupidity, blogs psychologist Michael Price in Psychology Today. For example, someone losing a bet that no one else made might lose face. But, Price muses, if they lost a bet that everyone else made too, they might not feel as silly. At eZonomics, we think planning your own path can tend to be a smarter strategy – rather than getting sucked in to the crowd.

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Ian Bright
Ian Bright

Senior economist at ING
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