Savings in Transnational Households: A Field Experiment Among Migrants from El Salvador

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Savings in Transnational Households: A Field Experiment Among Migrants from El Salvador

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Title: Savings in Transnational Households: A Field Experiment Among Migrants from El Salvador
Author: Ashraf, Nava; Aycinena, Diego; Martinez A., Claudia; Yang, Dean

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Citation: Ashraf, Nava, Diego Aycinena, Claudia Martinez A., and Dean Yang. "Savings in Transnational Households: A Field Experiment Among Migrants from El Salvador." Review of Economics and Statistics (forthcoming).
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Research Data: http://dx.doi.org/10.7910/DVN/27431
Abstract: While remittance flows to developing countries are very large, it is unknown whether migrants desire more control over how remittances are used. This research uses a randomized field experiment to investigate the importance of migrant control over the use of remittances. In partnership with a Salvadoran bank, we offered US-based migrants from El Salvador bank accounts in their home country into which they could send remittances. We randomly varied migrant control over El Salvador-based savings by offering different types of accounts across treatment groups. Migrants offered the greatest degree of control over savings accumulated the most savings at the partner bank, compared to others offered less or no control over savings. Effects of this treatment on savings are concentrated among migrants who expressed demand for control over remittances in the baseline survey. We also find positive spillovers of our savings intervention in the form of increased savings at other banks (specifically, banks in the U.S.). We interpret the effects we find as arising from the joint effect of the bank account offers and the marketing pitch made to study participants by our project staff.
Published Version: doi:10.1162/REST_a_00462
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Open Access Policy Articles, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#OAP
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:13348082
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