5 Great Behavioral Economics Reads from April

1. How To Grow Prepaid Through Financial Well-being

Kristen Berman, Wendy De La Rosa, and Mariel Beasley discuss the recent boom in prepaid card use, and how they can be used to further expand financial inclusion.

“A study of more than 10,000 participants conducted by researchers Catherine Rodriguez and Juan Saavedra found that savings balances were 43 percent greater for those receiving semi-monthly savings reminders than for those in the control group not receiving any reminders.”

By encouraging saving habits through the use of a couple of basic features, both providers and consumers can benefit.

2. Uber Shows How Not to Apply Behavioral Economics

In a followup to a New York Times piece, Francesca Gino discusses how behavioral economics can be applied to the benefit of all involved.

“Are the nudges used to benefit both parties involved in the interaction or do they create benefits for one side and costs for the other?”

From surgery checklists to fuel efficiency for airline flights, Gino shows the importance of balance when it comes to nudges.

3. Exercise Blog Series Part 1: Exercising Your Way to a Good Night’s Sleep

The first installment of Zachary Zenko and Jamie Foehl’s blog series focusing on exercise covers the interaction between exercise and sleep quality.

“A systematic review of six RCTs from 2012 (7) concluded that exercise leads to moderate improvements in sleep quality and sleep latency. In other words, its takes less time for exercisers to fall asleep and they report better sleep.”

This piece might just help you get to sleep a little easier tonight, so definitely give it a read!

4. 3 Ways to Save More on Tax Day

Wendy De La Rosa and Kristen Berman cover three easy to follow tips that can help you more effectively manage your tax return.

“Our pre-commitment condition roughly doubled the savings rate to 22 percent from 12 percent in the control condition. This low-cost text intervention helped thousands of people save part of their tax-refund, totaling over $1 million in savings.”

Good things do come in threes!

5. Dan’s Hike, Parts 1-4 (Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3) (Part 4)

Dan has returned from his epic trek along the Israel National Trail, and Stephanie Tepper has tracked his progress along the way.

“Based on his updates so far, it seems like Dan’s measurements have been a way to document his memories rather than keep up appearances. At the very least, we haven’t seen any mid-meal pictures yet, so I’d bet he’s doing a pretty good job of savoring his experiences.”

Stephanie has put together four great pieces that, along-side Dan’s written updates, offer some great context to the metrics that Dan tracked.