Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies Program on Energy and Sustainable Development Stanford University


Publications




Variability in nucleus accumbens activity mediates age-related suboptimal financial risk taking

Journal Article

Authors
Samanez-Larkin GR
Kuhnen CM
Yoo DJ
Knutson B

Published by
J Neurosci, Vol. 30 no. 4, page(s) 1426-34
2010


Abstract

As human life expectancy continues to rise, financial decisions of aging investors may have an increasing impact on the global economy. In this study, we examined age differences in financial decisions across the adult life span by combining functional neuroimaging with a dynamic financial investment task. During the task, older adults made more suboptimal choices than younger adults when choosing risky assets. This age-related effect was mediated by a neural measure of temporal variability in nucleus accumbens activity. These findings reveal a novel neural mechanism by which aging may disrupt rational financial choice.