ECO 211 Consumer Finance

ECO 211
Consumer Finance
Prof. Dvorak

Consumer finance examines how consumers make decisions about borrowing, saving, and managing risk. The goal of this course is to learn how to think critically about these decisions. We will learn concepts such as time value of money, risk, and consumption smoothing. We will examine the markets for credit (credit cards, student loans, mortgages), saving/investment (mutual funds, retirement plans, annuities), insurance and financial advice. We will ask why these markets sometimes fail and how regulation can help. Finally, we will examine how psychological biases influence consumers’ financial decisions and how private and public sectors can help in achieving better outcomes. This course is not just about how to manage your personal finances. It is about understanding consumers’ needs and identifying opportunities for better products and services.