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Financial decision-making in a community sample of adults with and without current symptoms of ADHD

Bangma, D. F., Tucha, L., Fuermaier, A. B. M., Tucha, O. & Koerts, J., 12-Oct-2020, In : PLoS ONE. 15, 10, e0239343.

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Research found that adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have more problems with financial decision-making than healthy controls. The present study investigates the impact of symptoms of ADHD on impulsive buying and the use of financial decision styles. Furthermore, the influence of personality, symptoms of depression and demographics on the association between ADHD and these aspects of financial decision-making is evaluated. A community sample of 1292 participants (age range 18-93 years, 45.4% male) completed questionnaires related to ADHD, impulsive buying, financial decision styles, personal financial situation, depression and personality. Four groups were formed based on self-reported ADHD symptoms: an 'ADHD' group (n = 45), an 'Adult-only ADHD' group (n = 57), a 'Subthreshold ADHD' group (n = 162) and a 'No ADHD' group (n = 265). Groups were compared using ANOVA and chi-square tests. Furthermore, multiple regression analyses in the complete sample were employed to examine the association between ADHD and financial decision-making. The ADHD and Adult-only ADHD groups reported significantly more impulsive buying, used more often an avoidant or spontaneous decision style and less often saved money compared to the No ADHD group. Regression analyses revealed that impulsive buying and financial decision styles were not significantly associated with ADHD symptoms when controlling for personality, symptoms of depression and demographics. The present study confirms previous research on adults with ADHD by indicating more impulsive buying and a more frequent use of disadvantageous financial decision styles (i.e., avoidant and spontaneous styles) in individuals with an elevated number of current symptoms of ADHD compared to individuals without symptoms of ADHD. Personality and demographic variables were found to be related to both impulsive buying and the use of specific financial decision styles and might be of influence on the association between impulsive buying, the use of financial decision styles and ADHD.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0239343
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume15
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 12-Oct-2020

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