Impact of Financial Education on Adolescent Financial Capability: Evidence from a Pilot Randomized Experiment

Alex Yue Feng ZHU*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)


Financial capability is an important competence for adolescents, and secondary school is a natural setting in which to deliver financial education courses. Currently, however, little empirical evidence has been published on the effects of in-school financial education on financial capability in adolescents. This pilot study brought together a randomized experimental design, a combination of local and non-local financial education courses, comprehensive measurements, and multi-level structural equation modeling for data analysis to evaluate the outcomes of a financial education project in a representative sample of Hong Kong adolescents. Results demonstrated that our financial intervention made a positive impact on objective financial knowledge and financial self-efficacy but a negative one on financial behaviors. Positive effects on financial self-efficacy were stronger in male adolescents than in females. Our findings represent an important contribution to the literature regarding financial education at the secondary school level.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
JournalChild Indicators Research
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Dec 2019


Bibliographical note

This study was funded by grants from the Investor and Financial Education Council, Securities and Future Commission, Hong Kong SAR.

Declaration of Conflicts of Interest
The authors declare no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Ethical Approval
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


  • Adolescents
  • Financial capability
  • Financial education
  • Gender difference
  • Randomized experimental trial

Cite this