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Ute Filipiak Dipl.-Ök.

Wirtschaftswissenschaft

Raum: M.12.30
Telefon: 0202 439- 2476
Fax: 0202 439- 3852
E-Mail: filipiak{at}wiwi.uni-wuppertal.de

Kurzbiographie

 

  • 04/2008   
    Beendigung des Studiums der Wirtschaftswissenschaft an der Bergischen Universität Wuppertal mit der Abschlussnote „Sehr gut“. Abschlussthema: Knowledge Economies in the Middle East and North Africa, Development Aspects and Growth Perspectives”.
  • Seit 04/2008
    Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin am Lehrstuhl für Industrieökonomik und Innovation, Prof. Dr. Werner Bönte.

 

Titel und Abstract des Dissertationsprojektes

 

 

Financial Investments, Regional Information Flows and Caste Affiliation Empirical Evidence from India

Betreuer: Prof. Dr. Werner Bönte (Wuppertal)

 

In order to make optimal financial investments private investors have to be informed about the various types of financial investments. Limited individual access to relevant information may lead to an inefficient allocation of resources.

In this paper it is argued that social status and social networks may have an influence on financial investment decisions if individuals tend to consult socially and geographically close individuals. The Indian caste system is an appropriate framework to study the relevance of social status and networks, since there is still a strong segregation between individuals belonging to different castes. If knowledge is primarily exchanged between individuals belonging to same caste living in the same region, the individual access to information will be related to the share of the respective caste in the region. Previous studies have analyzed the intergroup disparity due to caste affiliation and its impact on the individual performance and available opportunities. The relevance of caste affiliation for individual investment behavior, however, has not been examined, as yet. The empirical analysis is based on a unique dataset consisting of almost 40.000 respondents. It contains information about respondents’ financial investments, their awareness of various types of financial investments (e.g. shares, bonds), the information sources used for investment decisions as well as caste affiliation, i.e. whether respondents belong to backward castes (scheduled castes and scheduled tribes).

The results of probit estimations suggest that even if one controls for income, education level, various information sources, like radio, newspaper or TV that may influence the information about financial instruments, there is still a negative and statistically significant effect of backward caste on the awareness of financial instruments. This effect is even stronger, if individuals live in regions with a high share of backward castes. However, if individuals are aware of financial investment opportunities, there is no statistically significant relationship between caste affiliation and the probability of investing. Furthermore, the data show that almost 90 percent of all respondents consult solely family and friends before deciding on investments. This may suggest that the caste system influences investment behavior only indirectly via its effects on (regional) information diffusion.

 

 

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