Compulsive buying and quality of life: An estimate of the monetary cost of compulsive buying among adults in early midlife

Psychiatry Res. 2017 Jun;252:208-214. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2017.03.007. Epub 2017 Mar 7.


The aims of this study were to examine the associations between compulsive buying and quality of life and to estimate the monetary cost of compulsive buying for a cohort of men and women at mean age 43. Participants came from a community-based random sample of residents in two New York counties (N=548). The participants were followed from adolescence to early midlife. The mean age of participants at the most recent interview was 43.0 (SD=2.8). Fifty five percent of the participants were females. Over 90% of the participants were white. Linear regression analyses showed that compulsive buying was significantly associated with quality of life, despite controlling for relevant demographic and psychosocial factors. The estimated monetary cost of compulsive buying for this cohort was significant. The fact that the monetary cost of CB is not trivial suggests that individuals are both consciously and unconsciously plagued by their CB. The findings are important for interventionists and clinicians for cost-effective intervention and treatment programs.

Keywords: Household income; Longitudinal studies; Monetary cost of compulsive buying; Quality of life.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Compulsive Behavior / economics*
  • Compulsive Behavior / psychology*
  • Consumer Behavior / economics*
  • Cost of Illness*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • New York
  • Quality of Life / psychology*