Research by: Tristan A. Canare, Jamil Paolo S. Francisco, &  Edgardo Manuel Miguel M. Jopson 


Executive Summary

In addition to crime itself, the fear of crime is an important social concern as the literature suggests that it can affect individual behavior and decision-making. Some studies argue that negative emotions can induce present consumption; thus, one behavior that fear of crime can potentially affect is saving. Using Logit and Heckman Probit regression models on a household survey dataset of 1,200 respondents in Metro Manila, this paper tested for the relationship between fear of crime and saving behavior. Specifically, it looked at the relationship between fear of crime and the likelihood of saving, and of saving through formal means. Two forms of the fear of crime were tested —that of specific crimes and a general fear of crime. We also differentiated between fear of crime in Metro Manila as a whole, and in the individual’s immediate neighborhood. We found evidence that fear of crimes involving physical violence has a negative relationship with the likelihood of saving, but has a positive relationship with the likelihood of saving through formal channels. Fear of crimes against property, on the other hand, shows no such relationship. Moreover, the overall fear of crime in the immediate community has no relationship with saving, but fear of crime in the larger region where the individual lives (Metro Manila) has. These results have some implications. The negative relationship between some indicators of fear of crime and saving suggests that the emotional response to the negative emotion of fear outweighs the positive effect on saving of the uncertainty brought by fear. In addition, fear of crimes that involve physical violence—those that arguably cause greater emotional distress—rather than fear of crimes against property drive this relationship. Finally, it is the fear of crime in one’s larger environment—where one works, studies, or visits— rather than in his/her immediate neighborhood that is associated with saving behavior. 


To cite this article: Canare, T., Francisco, J. P. S., Jopson, E. M. M. M. (2019). Fear of crime and saving behavior. Review of Economic Analysis, 11(3), 293-323. 


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About the Journal

Review of Economic Analysis is an open access, peer-reviewed economic journal. It accepts submissions from all fields of economics and offers a rigorous refereeing process and wide dissemination.  

Published by RCEA (Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis,, a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to independent research in applied and theoretical economics and related fields, with headquarters in Canada and branches in Italy and Poland. 


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