“Striving for Savings” – religion and individual economic behavior
In the Neoclassical growth model the saving ratio and human capital might be seen as the most important factors fostering economic growth. At last since Weber [2005 (1904/05)] it seems clear, that religious beliefs and involvement shapes both social and economic human behavior. This paper tests the hypothesis whether religious belonging and believing influence a household’s economic decision-making in the USA, which was found to foster economic growth, namely the saving ratio at the individual level. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID), we find religious effects on saving. Regarding the decision to save money no large differences within the Christian religions, namely Protestants and Catholics, were found. However, large differences exist compared to non-religious people as well as to Non-Christians and Jews.
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