Sex Drives Spending

Don't let tricky marketing ploys influence your financial decisions and get you to spend more.

There’s a good reason casinos hire attractive women as waitresses, says Gad Saad, professor of marketing at Concordia University. It turns out -- surprise --that men respond in highly predictable ways when influenced by thoughts of sex. Populate a casino with the right servers, and men are likely to act in ways that penalize their own wallets and boost the house’s profits.

Saad, who studies how evolution has influenced human behavior, says that aroused men “engage in greater discounting.” That’s psych talk for short-term thinking. Men are also willing to take greater risks and exhibit what Saad calls “peacock behavior.”

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Bob Frick
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance