Behaving like Scrooge is typically not the best way to win points with a date. But a new study concludes that many love-seekers think savers are actually more attractive than spenders.
Savers are viewed as having higher powers of self-control than their free-spending peers. That kind of discipline can extend into other areas as well, making life more pleasant for potential mates, the study said.
For example, savers also may be more careful about exercising and watching their nutrition. Those careful about money, the thinking goes, may actually be better-looking than spenders because they have the discipline to work out and eat well.
Titled “A Penny Saved Is a Partner Earned: The Romantic Appeal of Savers,” the working paper from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business echoes similar studies showing that post-recession, a certain amount of frugality is appreciated in a partner.
Ron Lieber, a columnist for the New York Times, for example, got dating website eHarmony to scan through the millions of matches made in 2010. The site concluded that members who described themselves as savers actually managed to attract 25 percent more messages from suitors compared with those who called themselves spenders.
In fact, thriftiness is considered such a desirable quality, people have started lying and describing themselves as savers on dating profiles even if they are not, the study said. Human behavior, it turns out, can change only so much.