Psychometric evaluation of the Financial Threat Scale (FTS) in the context of the great recession
In the current economic downturn, people are fearful, uncertain, and preoccupied about how the recession affects them, their loved ones, and their collective futures. In short, they feel threatened by the stability and security of their personal finances. This study examined the psychometric properties of the Financial Threat Scale (FTS), a 5-item scale which was designed to measure these feelings. Data were collected in Canada at the height of the recession as part of a larger international investigation on the economic downturn and psychological health. Results showed the FTS is unidimensional and highly reliable. The FTS’ validity was supported by showing its relations with (1) psychological health outcomes, financial situation measures, and individual differences measures, all in the expected directions. The FTS also showed incremental validity by accounting for variance in psychological health outcomes above-and-beyond that of either the financial situation measures or individual differences measures. The theoretical and practical implications of the FTS are discussed.
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