The Determinants Of Household Savings In South Africa: A Panel Data Approach

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Talent Zwane
Lorraine Greyling
Mokadi Maleka


Panel Data, Household Savings, Endogeneity Bias, South Africa


This study employs panel data estimation models to investigate the determinants of household savings in South Africa over the period 2008 – 2012. The novelty of some panel data models is their power to overcome the problems of endogeneity bias, in addition to controlling for unobserved heterogeneity across households. The study used the three waves of the new unique and rich first national representative longitudinal survey, the National Income Dynamics Study (NIDS), which tracks changes in individuals’ livelihoods over time. The distinctiveness of NIDS data is that it is available in a panel format and can be used to investigate the structure and impact of different aspects of socio-economic factors on household savings. The results of this study reveal that household savings in South Africa are strongly driven by income, age structure, education achievement and employment status. Yet the causal nexus between savings and the household size was found to be negative, a sign that larger families compromise households savings prospects. 


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