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Behavioral characteristics affecting household portfolio selection in Japan

May 12, 2017
Mizuki Nakajo, Junnosuke Shino*, Kei Imakubo
Financial Systems and Bank Examination Department

  • Currently at the Financial Markets Department

In Japan, cash and deposits continue to make up the vast majority of households' financial assets. Since the 2000s, the percentage of households holding risk assets as investment/savings-oriented financial assets has been growing moderately. Nonetheless, households holding no risk assets still account for the majority. While the securities business industry and academics have identified a number of factors impeding household investment in risk assets, the aim of this report is to re-examine household behavior that prevents a move away from a concentration on cash and deposits. Understanding household behavior, such as households' reluctance to hold risk assets and insufficient planning for the future, holds important lessons for future changes in households' portfolio choices, for the debate on institutional reforms and the provision of products, and for the course of financial education.


Bank of Japan Review is published by the Bank of Japan to explain recent economic and financial topics for a wide range of readers. This report, 2017-E-3, is a translation of the original Japanese version, 2017-J-7, published in May 2017. The views expressed in the Review are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the Bank of Japan.

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