Jonathan Zinman

Professor of Economics

My research focuses on intertemporal choice and household finance. It tests economic theories of how firms and consumers interact in markets and examines the merits of incorporating specific features of psychology into economic models. I am particularly interested in developing and testing innovations that build better financial services architecture for people and the institutions that serve them.

HB 6106
B.A. Harvard College
Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Selected Publications

List Randomization for Sensitive Behavior: An Application for Measuring Use of Loan Proceeds, forthcoming, Journal of Development Economics (special issue on measurement), with Dean Karlan

Microcredit in Theory and Practice: Using Randomized Credit Scoring for Impact Evaluation, Science, 10June 2011, 332(6035), 1278-1284, with Dean Karlan

Being Surveyed Can Change Later Behavior and Related Parameter Estimates Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 10(1073), pp. 1-6, January 2011, joint with Alix Zwane, Eric Van Dusen, William Pariente, Clair Null, Edward Miguel, Michael Kremer, Dean Karlan, Richard Hornbeck, Xavier Giné, Esther Duflo, Florencia Devoto, Bruno Crepon and Abhijit Banerjee.

Put Your Money Where Your Butt Is: A Commitment Contract for Smoking Cessation  American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 2(4): 213-35, October 2010, with Xavier Gine and Dean Karlan

Fuzzy Math, Disclosure Regulation, and Credit Market Outcomes: Evidence from Truth-in-Lending Reform
  this version supersedes "How a Cognitive Bias Shapes Competition..."
Review of Financial Studies 24(2): 506-534, February 2011, with Victor Stango

Exponential Growth Bias and Household Finance
  previous titles: "Fuzzy Math and Household Finance: Theory and Evidence", "The Price is Not Right..."
Journal of Finance,  64(6), December 2009, 2807-2849, with Victor Stango
   featured in The Wall Street Journal (January 16, 2008); (March 19, 2009), Parade Magazine (May 10, 2009)

What’s Advertising Content Worth? Evidence from a Consumer Credit Marketing Field Experiment
  previous title: "What's Psychology Worth?..."   Web Appendix   Data
Quarterly Journal of Economics, 125(1), February 2010, with M. Bertrand, D. Karlan, S. Mullainathan, and E. Shafir

Observing Unobservables: Identifying Information Asymmetries with a Consumer Credit Field Experiment
Econometrica, 77(6), November 2009, pp. 1993-2008, with Dean Karlan.

Credit Elasticities in Less-Developed Economies: Implications for Microfinance
American Economic Review, 98(3),  June 2008, pp. 1040-68.

Restricting Consumer Credit Access: Household Survey Evidence on Effects Around the Oregon Rate Cap
Journal of Banking and Finance, 34(3), March 2010, 546-556

Expanding Credit Access: Using Randomized Supply Decisions to Estimate the Impacts    Web Appendix   Data
Review of Financial Studies, 23(1), January 2010, with Dean Karlan

Small Individual Loans and Mental Health: A Randomized Controlled Trial Among South African Adults
BMC Public Health, 8:1, pp. 409-, December 2008, with Lia Fernald, Rita Hamad, Dean Karlan, and Emily Ozer

Social and Economic Correlates of Depressive Symptoms and Perceived Stress in South African Adults
Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 62, pp. 538-544, with Rita Hamad, Lia Fernald, and Dean Karlan

Lying About Borrowing
Journal of the European Economic Association (Papers and Proceedings), 6(2-3), April-May 2008. with D. Karlan.

Where is the Missing Credit Card Debt? Clues and Implications    Technical working paper version
Review of Income and Wealth, 55(2), 249-265

Debit or Credit? Journal of Banking and Finance, 33(2), February 2009, pp. 358-366

What Do Consumers Really Pay on Their Checking and Credit Card Accounts? Explicit, Implicit, and Avoidable Costs
American Economic Review Papers and Proceedings, 99(2), May 2009, 424-29, with Victor Stango

Youth Smoking in the United States:  Evidence and Implications.  NBER working paper version
 in Risky Behavior Among Youths: An Economic Analysis, ed. Jonathan Gruber, University of Chicago Press, 2000, with Jonathan Gruber

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