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The Financial Behavior of Emerging Adults: A Family Financial Socialization Approach


  • Bryce L. Jorgensen

    () (New Mexico State University)

  • Damon L. Rappleyea

    (East Carolina University)

  • John T. Schweichler
  • Xiangming Fang

    (East Carolina University)

  • Mary E. Moran

    (East Carolina University)


The current study examined the role of attachment insecurity, locus of control, and parental financial communication on the financial behavior of emerging adults from a family financial socialization theory perspective. Data were used from the Emerging Adult Financial Capability Study, the sample consisted of emerging adult college students (N = 321) from a large southeastern university in the United States. Structural equation modeling was used to examine the direct and indirect effects as well as the overall fit of the model that was constructed according to family financial socialization theory. Results suggested that increased attachment insecurity predicted decreased financial communication from parents and a decreased perception of an internal locus of control. Emerging adults who received greater financial instruction (both direct and indirect) and who felt they had a greater ability to influence outcomes in their life engaged in more sound financial behavior. Results also suggested that financial communication and locus of control mediated the relationship between attachment insecurity and financial behavior. The findings supported the inclusion of attachment as an important family relationship variable in the financial socialization process, as well as the structure of a conceptual model of family financial socialization theory.

Suggested Citation

  • Bryce L. Jorgensen & Damon L. Rappleyea & John T. Schweichler & Xiangming Fang & Mary E. Moran, 2017. "The Financial Behavior of Emerging Adults: A Family Financial Socialization Approach," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 38(1), pages 57-69, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jfamec:v:38:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s10834-015-9481-0
    DOI: 10.1007/s10834-015-9481-0

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Bryce L. Jorgensen & David B. Allsop & Samuel D. Runyan & Brandan E. Wheeler & David A. Evans & Loren D. Marks, 2019. "Forming Financial Vision: How Parents Prepare Young Adults for Financial Success," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 553-563, September.
    2. Ji Hyun Kim & Julia Torquati, 2019. "Financial Socialization of College Students: Domain-General and Domain-Specific Perspectives," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 226-236, June.
    3. Zhu, Alex Yue Feng, 2019. "School financial education and parental financial socialization: Findings from a sample of Hong Kong adolescents," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 107(C).
    4. Jonathan G. Kimmes & Stuart J. Heckman, 2017. "Parenting Styles and College Enrollment: A Path Analysis of Risky Human Capital Decisions," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 38(4), pages 614-627, December.


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