Employees’ Financial Insecurity and Health: The Underlying Role of Stress and Work–Family Conflict Appraisals

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Data from two longitudinal samples were utilized to elucidate underlying mechanisms of the well‐established relationship between financial insecurity and health outcomes, stemming from the theoretical rationale of conservation of resources and cognitive appraisal theories. Study 1 (n = 80) consisted of low‐wage food manufacturing employees working full time, while Study 2 (n = 331) was consisted of a larger, heterogeneous sample of full‐time workers representing multiple occupations. Respondents were surveyed on financial insecurity, work‐to‐family conflict (WFC), stress, and health outcomes at two time periods, 3 months apart. Results across our studies provided support for the direct effects of financial insecurity on WFC and stress. In addition, appraisals of WFC and stress serve as significant mediators of the relationship between financial insecurity and health outcomes, including a significant overall lagged effect across time, and perceived stress accounting for the largest proportion of variance in the lagged relationship among Time 1 financial insecurity and Time 2 health outcomes. Besides support for conservation of resources and cognitive appraisal theories, practically, our studies suggest that workplace initiatives to reduce financial insecurity could positively influence employees’ work–family, stress, and health experiences.



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This article is available online from the publisher's website: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/joop.12216

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