IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bep/unimip/unimi-1105.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Impulsivity and household indebtedness

Author

Listed:
  • Cristina Ottaviani

    (University of Bologna)

  • Daniela Vandone

    (University of Milan)

Abstract

Using a probit model we empirically estimated the role of emotional factors in determining household participation in the debt market, after controlling for traditional economic predictors, such as age, level of education, income, wealth, and work status. A sample of 445 Caucasian subjects, randomly selected among full time employed at international asset management companies, underwent the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale, the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) coupled with skin conductance recording, and a series of questions related to their demographic-socio economical profile. Aside from confirming the role played by the traditional explanatory variables commonly used as determinants of household indebtedness, results revealed the significant influence of individuals’ impulsivity in debt decisions. Specifically, the motor component of impulsivity predicted unsecured debt (i.e. consumer credit), while the non planning component was related to secured debt (i.e. mortgages). On the contrary, the presence of a somatic marker to guide decisions at the IGT did not predict real life indebtedness decisions in this non clinical sample. The notion that “non rational” factors influence debt demand has been largely ignored and raises concerns about the risk of over-indebtedness for impulsive individuals.

Suggested Citation

  • Cristina Ottaviani & Daniela Vandone, 2010. "Impulsivity and household indebtedness," UNIMI - Research Papers in Economics, Business, and Statistics unimi-1105, Universitá degli Studi di Milano.
  • Handle: RePEc:bep:unimip:unimi-1105 Note: oai:cdlib1:unimi-1105
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://services.bepress.com/unimi/business/art5
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Karlsson, Niklas & Dellgran, Peter & Klingander, Birgitta & Garling, Tommy, 2004. "Household consumption: Influences of aspiration level, social comparison, and money management," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 753-769, December.
    2. Reint Gropp & John Karl Scholz & Michelle J. White, 1997. "Personal Bankruptcy and Credit Supply and Demand," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 217-251.
    3. Stephan Meier & Charles Sprenger, 2010. "Present-Biased Preferences and Credit Card Borrowing," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 193-210, January.
    4. Ranyard, Rob & Hinkley, Lisa & Williamson, Janis & McHugh, Sandie, 2006. "The role of mental accounting in consumer credit decision processes," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 571-588, August.
    5. Ana del Rio & Garry Young, 2006. "The determinants of unsecured borrowing: evidence from the BHPS," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(15), pages 1119-1144.
    6. Rinaldi, Laura & Sanchis-Arellano, Alicia, 2006. "Household debt sustainability: what explains household non-performing loans? An empirical analysis," Working Paper Series 570, European Central Bank.
    7. Duca John V. & Rosenthal Stuart S., 1993. "Borrowing Constraints, Household Debt, and Racial Discrimination in Loan Markets," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 77-103, October.
    8. Graham, Fred & Isaac, Alan G., 2002. "The behavioral life-cycle theory of consumer behavior: survey evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 391-401, August.
    9. Lea, Stephen E. G. & Webley, Paul & Walker, Catherine M., 1995. "Psychological factors in consumer debt: Money management, economic socialization, and credit use," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 681-701, December.
    10. Milton Friedman, 1957. "Introduction to "A Theory of the Consumption Function"," NBER Chapters,in: A Theory of the Consumption Function, pages 1-6 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. David Leece, 2000. "Choice of mortgage instrument, liquidity constraints and the demand for housing debt in the UK," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(9), pages 1121-1132.
    12. King, Mervyn A. & Leape, Jonathan I., 1998. "Wealth and portfolio composition: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 155-193, June.
    13. Sarah Bridges & Richard Disney, 2004. "Use of credit and arrears on debt among low-income families in the United Kingdom," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 25(1), pages 1-25, March.
    14. Cox, Donald & Jappelli, Tullio, 1993. "The Effect of Borrowing Constraints on Consumer Liabilities," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(2), pages 197-213, May.
    15. Milton Friedman, 1957. "A Theory of the Consumption Function," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number frie57-1, January.
    16. Fumio Hayashi, 1985. "The Effect of Liquidity Constraints on Consumption: A Cross-Sectional Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(1), pages 183-206.
    17. Ana del Rio & Garry Young, 2008. "The impact of unsecured debt on financial pressure among British households," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(15), pages 1209-1220.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Dick, Christian D. & Jaroszek, Lena M., 2013. "Knowing what not to do: Financial literacy and consumer credit choices," ZEW Discussion Papers 13-027, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Decision-making; household indebtedness; impulsivity; Iowa Gambling Task;

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bep:unimip:unimi-1105. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/damilit.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.