Family Financial Socialization among Latino Immigrant Families – A Mixed Methods Study

  • Author / Creator
    Leidy Johana Zuluaga Osorio
  • Parents are the most important influence on children’s financial learning. Several studies have detailed the various ways in which children’s financial literacy is associated with their parents’ financial socialization practices. The majority of these studies focus on individual-level variables and retrospective evaluations of childhood experiences. However, little is known about the mechanisms that underlie parents’ engagement in financial socialization. This study focused on Latino families because dealing with finances may be especially difficult for Latino immigrant families who do not fully understand Canadian financial products and services.

    Drawing on the reasoned action approach and family systems theory; the purpose of this dyadic, embedded mixed methods design study was to address the limitations in the literature by answering four research questions: (a) is participants’ financial socialization self-efficacy associated with their own and their partners’ family financial socialization practices?; (b) are participants’ attitudes towards educating children about money management associated with their own and their partners’family financial socialization practices?; (c) what do Latino parents think about financial socialization?; and (d) how do parents’ perspectives about financial socialization inform the results found in the quantitative strand?

    In the quantitative component, the present study analyzed data from 80 heterosexual Latino couples. An actor-partner interdependence model revealed that self-efficacy and two attitudes (hoping children learn to make the right financial decisions outside of home and thinking that teaching children about family finances is important) were linked to financial socialization, but a third attitude (children will learn money management by themselves when they grow up) was not a predictor of financial socialization. Regarding partner effects, there was support for the beneficial impact of ‘hoping children learn to make right financial decisions outside of home’ and ‘thinking that teaching children about family finances is important’ on partners’ financial socialization. Findings support the roles of self-efficacy and attitudes in shaping family financial socialization.

    In the qualitative strand, five families from diverse countries of origin (Mexico, Cuba, Colombia, and Salvador) participated in an interview. Qualitative findings supported the notion that financial socialization is influenced by parents’ attitudes and self-efficacy. Results highlighted that the participants had positive attitudes towards financial socialization which inspired them to engage, or to want to engage, in financial socialization. However, they assumed that modeling is the main mechanism to teach money management. Parents also needed to overcome individual and contextual barriers in order to engage in financial socialization.

    Overall, results were consistent with the reasoned action approach and family systems theory. However, the results underscore the importance of looking at the intersection of other family and individual constructs. The study has some limitations including the sample size, cross-sectional design, and reliance on self-report methods. Yet, the study added to the existing literature on financial socialization. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2019
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
  • License
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