A Pilot Study Assessing Attitudes toward Finance among Italian Business Students

  •  Elisa Bocchialini    
  •  Beatrice Ronchini    


Exploring ‘attitude toward finance’ as a factor predicting financial literacy is a new area of inquiry in academic literature. This study is a preliminary investigation of attitudes toward finance among a sample of students in higher education in Italy. It uses ten focus group discussions as data collecting method. Respondents are a total of 98 learners attending the Faculty of Business and Economics in a large University in  northern Italy, majoring in the areas of Finance, Accounting, or Marketing. The aim of this study is to assess the state of the art of the beliefs, feelings and self-perceptions of the target group regarding financial matters and practices, and to generate a questionnaire to measure attitudes toward finance in future quantitative studies. A Chi-Square analysis is used to analyse the collected data and determine if there are significant associations between students’ attitudes towards finance and characteristics like gender, level of study (first or second cycle degree) and faculty major. The research findings suggest that, even in a homogeneous cluster like our study population, the profile of attitude toward finance is not uniform. Overall, no significant differences are found between male and female students. Education level does not seem to significantly affect the construct either. However, the faculty major impacts on students’ attitude toward finance. Policy implications and suggestions for further work are discussed.

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