Are college students at greater risk of credit card abuse Age, gender, materialism and parental influence on consumer response to credit cards

Yam Limbu, Montclair State University
Bruce A. Huhmann, New Mexico State University
Bing Xu, California State University Dominguez Hills


Two studies examine age, gender, parental influence and materialism effects on consumers credit card attitudes and behavior. Credit card commitment and use are greater among older adults than college students. Women outperform men in managing balances. Materialism heightens commitment, trust and use, but interferes with outstanding balance management. Parental influence can improve students commitment, trust, use and balance management while discouraging overuse. Parental influence also mediates materialism's effect on trust and balance management. Overall, findings show college students are not more vulnerable than older adults to credit card abuse, but that students who are female, materialistic and with less parental influence are at more risk.