In other words, the act of handling money makes young children work harder and give less. This effect was observed in children who lacked the concrete knowledge of money's purpose and persisted despite the denomination of the money.

"Money is a double-edged sword. It produces good outcomes in terms of concentration and effort but bad outcomes when it comes to helping, taking, and donating." said professor Kathleen Vohs from the University of Minnesota and co-author of the study.

For this, the researchers conducted five experiments and one study involving 550 children (ages three-six) in Poland and the US.  

"Our findings with children as young as three years old suggest potentially significant implications for achievement, generosity, and interpersonal harmony," added Lan Chaplin, associate professor of marketing at the University of Illinois.

According to Vohs, the results with children mirror patterns from European, Asian and North American adult samples. The paper is forthcoming in the journal Psychological Science.


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