Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Poor physical, financial health driven by same factors

Date:
July 1, 2014
Source:
Washington University in St. Louis
Summary:
Poor physical health and financial health are driven by the same underlying psychological factors, finds a new study. Researchers found that the decision to contribute to a 401(k) retirement plan predicted whether or not an individual will act to correct poor physical health indicators revealed during an employer-sponsored health examination.

Poor physical health and financial health are driven by the same underlying psychological factors, finds a new study out of the Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.

Researchers Lamar Pierce, PhD, associate professor of strategy at Olin and PhD-candidate Timothy Gubler found that the decision to contribute to a 401(k) retirement plan predicted whether or not an individual will act to correct poor physical health indicators revealed during an employer-sponsored health examination.

"We find that existing retirement contribution patterns and future health improvements are highly correlated," the study says. "Those who save for the future by contributing to a 401(k) improved abnormal health test results and poor health behaviors approximately 27 percent more than non-contributors."

Gubler and Pierce outline their findings in a new paper "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Retirement Planning Predicts Employee Health Improvements," which appeared June 30 in the journal Psychological Science.

In the paper, Gubler and Pierce provide evidence that insufficient retirement funds and chronic health problems are at least partially driven by the same time discounting preferences.

Gubler and Pierce studied use personnel and health data from eight industrial laundry locations in multiple states. They found the previous decision of an employee to forego immediate income and contribute to a 401(k) retirement plan predicted whether he or she would respond positively to the revelation of poor physical health.

Gubler and Pierce wanted to compare 401(k) contributors and non-contributors on how much they were willing to change a health risk. Employees were given an initial health screening. Ninety-seven percent of them had at least one abnormal blood test and 25 percent had at least one severely abnormal finding.

They were told of the results, which were sent to the worker's personal physicians. Workers also were given information on risky health behaviors and anticipated future health risks.

The researchers followed the laundry workers for two years to see how they attempted to improve their health, and if those changes were tied to financial planning.

After controlling for differences in initial health, demographics and job type, the researchers found that retirement savings and health improvement behaviors are highly correlated.

Those who had previously chosen to save for the future through 401(k) contributions improved their health significantly more than non-contributors, despite having few health differences prior to program implementation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Washington University in St. Louis. The original article was written by Neil Schoenherr. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. T. Gubler, L. Pierce. Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Retirement Planning Predicts Employee Health Improvements. Psychological Science, 2014; DOI: 10.1177/0956797614540467

Cite This Page:

Washington University in St. Louis. "Poor physical, financial health driven by same factors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140701165212.htm>.
Washington University in St. Louis. (2014, July 1). Poor physical, financial health driven by same factors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140701165212.htm
Washington University in St. Louis. "Poor physical, financial health driven by same factors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140701165212.htm (accessed August 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) Here are three things you need to know about the deadly Ebola outbreak's progression this week. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins