Using data from a randomized field experiment with 552 households, nested within 40 villages and townships in South Africa, we examine the impact of a brief financial literacy training that was integrated into a broader psychosocial parenting intervention. Based on self-reported measures, we document significant improvements in financial behaviors, including higher saving and lower borrowing rates. We also see wider implications for household economic welfare, demonstrated by reduced self-reported financial distress, better resilience to economic shocks, and a greater capacity to securing basic needs. We argue that program impact may run through three effect channels, namely improved self-efficacy, higher family and community social support, and greater optimism. Overall, our findings suggest that “hybrid” program curricula that offer combinations of financial and psychosocial components can add value to stand-alone financial literacy training.
- Financial literacy
- South Africa