Semester

Spring

Date of Graduation

2021

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Type

MS

College

Eberly College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Psychology

Committee Chair

JoNell Strough

Committee Member

Julie Hicks Patrick

Committee Member

Natalie Shook

Abstract

The emerging research on age differences in monetary sequence preferences suggests that older adults make decisions that are normatively correct from the standpoint of economic theory when choosing to receive larger versus smaller amounts of money sooner than later, but make non-optimal decisions about paying money. In an adult life-span sample (N = 594, aged 20-88, Mage = 46.48, SD= 15.16) recruited through MTurk, the present study examined age differences in monetary sequence preferences. Participants received eight hypothetical scenarios that described monetary events, and completed measures of financial literacy and financial experience. Older age was associated with preferences to receive larger amounts of money sooner than smaller amounts, the normatively correct decision, but age was not associated with preferences for sequences of paying money. Older adults’ greater financial literacy and greater financial experience partially accounted for their normatively correct preferences for sequences of receiving money. Findings have implications such that interventions could target both financial literacy and experience to facilitate financial decision making across adulthood.

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