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The Attitudes towards the Euro: An Empirical Study Based on the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP)

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  • Bettina Isengard
  • Thorsten Schneider

Abstract

This paper investigates the attitudes towards the Euro and their changes over time in Germany by using longitudinal micro data from the German Socio Economic Panel Study (SOEP). We observe that a large part of the German population was worried about the new currency before its implementation. Individual changes of worries can be explained by theories of self-perception and cognitive dissonance. According to these theories, concerns should diminish after the Euro notes and coins are distributed. In contrast, the theory of reactance predicts an increase, while the theories of attitude changes as learning processes offer both its increase and decrease. The latter seems to be the most suitable explanation for the development of concerns about the Euro. We discover that problems with the handling of the new money and the time of questioning are strong predictors. The time pattern goes hand in hand with the time of press coverage on price rises. As worries are connected with problems in handling the new money, future member states of the European Monetary Union should prepare their population in a better manner than the existing member states did.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.41229.de/dp403.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 403.

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Length: 31 p.
Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp403

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Keywords: Euro; European Union; Attitudes; Changes of attitudes; National identity;

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  1. Meier-Pesti, Katja & Kirchler, Erich, 2003. "Attitudes towards the Euro by national identity and relative national status," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 293-299, June.
  2. van Everdingen, Yvonne M. & van Raaij, W. Fred, 1998. "The Dutch people and the euro: A structural equations analysis relating national identity and economic expectations to attitude towards the euro," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 721-740, December.
  3. Luna-Arocas, Roberto & Guzman, Gustavo & Quintanilla, Ismael & Farhangmehr, Minoo, 2001. "The Euro and European identity: The Spanish and Portuguese case," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 441-460, August.
  4. Meier, Katja & Kirchler, Erich, 1998. "Social representations of the euro in Austria," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 755-774, December.
  5. Muller-Peters, Anke & Pepermans, Roland & Kiell, Guido & Battaglia, Nicole & Beckmann, Suzanne & Burgoyne, Carole & Farhangmehr, Minoo & Guzman, Gustavo & Kirchler, Erich & Koenen, Cordula, 1998. "Explaining attitudes towards the euro: Design of a cross-national study," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 663-680, December.
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