Research Methods in Consumer Law
Show Less

Research Methods in Consumer Law

A Handbook

Edited by Hans-W. Micklitz, Anne-Lise Sibony and Fabrizio Esposito

Consumer law is worthy of greater academic attention at a time when many new questions arise and old ones need new answers. This unique handbook takes the reader on a journey through existing literature, research questions and methods. It builds on the state of the art to offer a springboard for jumping to the heart of contemporary issues and equips researchers with a starter’s kit to weave together rich traditions, ranging from socio-economics to behavioural analysis.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 10: A behavioural perspective on consumer finance

Geneviève Helleringer


There are important behavioural reasons why financial consumers tend to make suboptimal financial decisions. Regulatory responses are warranted. Existing regulations have been designed to protect financial consumers and make them better off, but well-meaning interventions may sometimes make consumers worse off as they contain behaviourally blind spots and are mis-calibrated. The behavioural lens shows that the calibration of such regulation is itself delicate: well-meaning regulatory interventions that do not take into account behavioural insights may make consumers worse off. The limited cognitive power of financial consumers and their preference for the present are two large elements of the hidden behavioural iceberg on which traditional regulatory interventions have often crashed, even as behavioural realities are becoming more present in the regulatory conversation. Financial firms are often in a position to exploit behavioural traits, which increases the necessity for regulators to take into consideration behavioural realities. It also strengthens the case for performance-based requirements that put the onus on firms to harness behavioural traits in a manner that is favourable to consumers. Meanwhile, interventions designed to modify the choice architecture can be truly effective under certain conditions. In particular, there is a growing interest in personalised regulatory interventions that take into account individual differences in behaviour and degrees of rationality.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.