Title page for ETD etd-10142005-135742

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Porter, Nancy M.
URN etd-10142005-135742
Title Testing a model of financial well-being
Degree PhD
Department Housing, Interior Design, and Resource Management
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Garman, E. T. Committee Chair
Littlefield, James E. Committee Member
Lytton, R. H. Committee Member
Scott, Elaine D. Committee Member
Wolfe, L. M. Committee Member
  • Financial security Public opinion.
  • Finance
  • Personal Public opinion.
Date of Defense 1990-04-01
Availability unrestricted
This study was designed to empirically test a conceptual model and measurement of financial well-being as a function of (a) personal characteristics; (b) objective attributes, quantitative indicators of the financial domain and financial management behaviors of respondents; (c) perceived attributes, subjectively assessed life conditions and perceptions of financial situation; and (d) evaluations of financial situation using various reference points as standards of comparison. Two sub-problems were investigated in the study: (a) Which group of attributes, personal characteristics, objective attributes, perceived attributes, or evaluated attributes, significantly explains variance in perceived financial well-being?; and (b) Which individual attributes significantly explain variance in perceived financial well-being?

A mail survey was conducted from October of 1989 through January of 1990 with a randomly selected sample of Virginia citizens (N = 1,500). After an initial mailing and two follow-up mailings, 529 questionnaires were returned of the 1,450 that were received by respondents, providing a 36.5% total return rate (529/1,450). Twenty-three questionnaires were blank or unusable, yielding a useable return rate of 34.9% (506/1,450). Demographic characteristics of the sample were similar to those of the population of Virginia citizens.

Financial well-being, as measured by an adaptation of Cantril's (1965) 11-point self-anchoring striving scale, was the dependent variable. All of the independent variables regressed on the dependent variable produced an R 2 of .71, which was statistically significant (p < .01). Removing each group of attributes individually from the regression equation resulted in a significant (p < .01) decrease in the resulting adjusted R2s as computed by F ratios. All attribute groups were determined to be essential to the measurement of financial wellbeing.

Individual variables with a significant t ratio (p < .05) were the Perceived Attribute Index, Index of Well-Being, and full-time employment status. The results of the study supported the conceptual model. Results clearly verified the measurement of financial well-being as a function of personal characteristics, objective attributes, perceived attributes, and evaluated attributes.

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