Ability, Educational Attainment, and Household Financial Distress

Niilo Luotonen, Vesa Puttonen, Elias Rantapuska*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Using register data on the Finnish population, we show that both ability (measured with comprehensive school GPA) and educational attainment are relevant predictors of financial distress, even after accounting for childhood family environment. Low GPA is an especially useful predictor of financial distress years later for those who attain a secondary-level education at most. Our results suggest that any societal interventions to mitigate financial distress should particularly focus on low GPA individuals, and especially those unlikely to continue their studies after completing comprehensive school.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)655-672
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Consumer Policy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Cognitive ability
  • Educational attainment
  • Financial distress
  • Noncognitive ability


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