Économie et Statistique n° 343 - 2001 Unemployment Benefits and Returning to Work - Housing in the European Union - Children's Pocket Money - A New Breakdown of Public Expenditure
Children's Pocket Money: Learning Financial Independence
Pocket money for children is the very first form of intergenerational transfer. The 1992 Education survey shows that three-quarters of France's pupils and students aged 6 to 25 each receive an average of over 3,000 French francs (460 Euros) from their parents over the school year, in the form of regular or sporadic payments. This assistance rises substantially with the child's age and especially level of education, in particular when going into the first form, the fifth form and higher education. Children's financial independence grows with age, hand in hand with more regular pocket money payments. This creates a complex interaction with the income earned by the child. This process of independence varies by social background and type of studies. Children receive more pocket money when their parents have high incomes and belong to upper social classes. From the youngest age, the parents provide this assistance as an incentive and a form of reciprocal arrangement in the intergenerational relationship: 18.2% of the families who gave ad-hoc financial assistance to their children did so to encourage them to work at school, while 18.5% did so to reward work done at home. Parents' motivations therefore appear to be based on more than just altruism.