Journal of Family and Economic Issues

, Volume 40, Issue 3, pp 498–510 | Cite as

The Moderating Role of Depressive Symptoms Between Financial Assets and Bequests Expectation

  • Shinae ChoiEmail author
  • Melissa J. Wilmarth
Original Paper


This study investigated the association between financial assets and bequests expectation, specifically whether having depression moderated the association. Our sample included 10,340 middle-aged and older Americans from the 2014 Health and Retirement Study. Results from ordinary least squares regression models showed a positive association between financial assets and bequests expectation, whereas a negative association between depression and bequests expectation. Furthermore, a moderating role of depression was revealed. Specifically, the relationship between financial assets and bequests expectation was stronger for individuals with depression than for individuals without depression. Future research and practice should incorporate perspectives of both financial assets and depressvie symptoms to more effectively help individuals and families deal their current financial situation as well as identify their estate planning needs. We also discuss public policy implications of the findings.


Financial assets Depression Bequests expectation Estate planning 



Portions of these findings were presented at the 2018 American Council on Consumer Interests Conference.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Consumer SciencesThe University of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  2. 2.Alabama Research Institute on AgingThe University of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Consumer SciencesThe University of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA

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