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Determinants of individual savings among Tanzanians

Neema Mori (Department of Finance, University of Dar es Salaam Business School, Dar es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania) (School of Business and Law, University of Agder, Kristiansand, Norway)

Review of Behavioral Finance

ISSN: 1940-5979

Article publication date: 15 July 2019

Issue publication date: 8 August 2019




Savings help to provide for future personal and households needs. The purpose of this paper examined Tanzanians’ determinants of saving. It studied the relationship between individual characteristics (gender, marital status, age, education level and financial education) and saving behaviour.


The paper used 2017 national baseline survey data with 8,959 observations from all over Tanzania. Descriptive analysis and econometric models were used to test the developed hypotheses.


Descriptive results show that Tanzanians mainly associate saving with setting money aside to keep it safe for future use. The results also show that most Tanzanians keep their money at home – a very informal way of saving. The results indicate that age and education level are key characteristics that determine positive saving by Tanzanians.

Research limitations/implications

This study used FinScope survey data which was limited to Tanzania. Since FinScope surveys are done in other African countries, using similar methodologies, it would be interesting to investigate similar trends in other contexts.

Practical implications

The study recommends promoting awareness of saving in formal institutions. This will benefit not only customers but the financial institutions and mobile telecom companies themselves.


This study contributes to the life-cycle theory by showing how families, societies and exposures influence individuals to save. Gender and marital status seem to play a lesser role than social- and exposure-related aspects of age and education. Exposure and social interactions are key determinants in the attitude to saving.



Mori, N. (2019), "Determinants of individual savings among Tanzanians", Review of Behavioral Finance, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 352-370.



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