IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

How Does Marriage Affect the Allocation of Assets in Women’s Defined Contribution Plans?


  • Angela C. Lyons
  • Tansel Yilmazer


Past studies that examine gender differences in investment decisions have treated married households as a single decision- making unit. This study improves upon traditional unitary bargaining models and estimates a series of unitary and collective-type models to investigate how a husband’s age and relative control over financial resources affects the allocation of assets in women’s defined contribution plans. Using data from the Survey of Consumer Finances, the results show that women who are married to less educated and older men are less likely to take on risk with their portfolios. Women who earn a greater share of the household’s total earnings are also less likely to invest in risky assets. There is little evidence that the characteristics of the wife affect the husband’s investment decisions. The findings have important policy implications, especially with respect to proposed Social Security reforms which would enable workers to choose how their personal security accounts are invested.

Suggested Citation

  • Angela C. Lyons & Tansel Yilmazer, 2004. "How Does Marriage Affect the Allocation of Assets in Women’s Defined Contribution Plans?," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2004-28, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2004.
  • Handle: RePEc:crr:crrwps:wp2004-28

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Estelle James & Alejandra Cox Edwards & Rebeca Wong, 2012. "The Gender Impact of Pension Reform," World Bank Other Operational Studies 13046, The World Bank.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:crr:crrwps:wp2004-28. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Amy Grzybowski) or (Christopher F Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.