Freitag, 13. Juni 2014, 11:00 - 12:30 iCal

Psychological aspects of consumer credit use

Gastvortrag von Prof. Dr. Erik Hölzl (Köln)

Hörsaal D, NIG, 6. Stock
Universitätsstraße 7, 1010 Wien


In many countries, consumer credit use has strongly increased over the last decades. Credit takes a wide variety of forms, ranging from bank loans over credit cards to financing offers for purchases. Credit can be beneficial by opening up opportunities, but also results in financial problems for some consumers. This talk aims at providing an overview on the current state of knowledge on the

psychological factors involved in taking up and repaying a credit. Adopting a view of credit use as a process evolving over time, these are grouped into six broad areas: 1) Sociodemographic and situational factors (e.g., family status, interest rates) are relevant because they influence both the demand for and the availability of credit. 2) Knowledge and the correct perception of credit components (e.g., contract length, total costs) are relevant to choose an optimal contract. 3) Mental accounting (e.g., coupling between the costs of the credit and the benefits of the good) and

intertemporal trade-offs are relevant for economic efficiency. 4) Social norms (e.g., via socialization, peer influence) are relevant both for acceptance of credit use and for social support. 5) During repayment, credit use is related to well-being, especially when inancial problems occur (e.g., marital conflicts, negative emotions). 6) Money management (e.g., prioritizing expenses) is relevant for avoiding a development from credit use into problem debt. The talk will close by discussing new developments in credit forms (e.g., internet loans, social lending) and intervention programs to improve credit decisions and repayment.

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Prof. Dr. Erich Kirchler


Elisabeth Dorfinger
Fakultät für Psychologie