Debt Actually Makes You Stupid

5175015713_3641d60dde_zIt’s easy to tell ourselves that getting into debt was stupid.

Maybe, maybe not.

Lots of debt happens without making bad decisions.  Think of medical bills.  Natural disasters.  Divorce.

But regardless of how you got in debt, there’s more bad news.

Just being in debt makes you stupid.

Stupid, as in, your IQ goes down under the stress of being in debt.

Stupid, as in, you are likely to make poor choices about issues in addition to money.

Stress suppresses intelligence

Researchers at Harvard, Princeton and the University of Warwick found that financial worries impeded not just thinking about money issues, but also spatial and cognitive tests.

People worrying about having enough money to pay their bills tend to lose temporarily the equivalent of 13 IQ points, scientists found when they gave intelligence tests to shoppers at a New Jersey mall and farmers in India.

Image courtesy of Flickr and Manuel Scheikl.

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