Issues Concerning Family Decision Making and Financial Services

Donald J. Hempel, University of Connecticut
Lewis R. Tucker, University of Connecticut
ABSTRACT - Consumer researchers have largely ignored financial management issues relative to product specific decisions. A conceptual model is proposed to enhance understanding of family financial decisions. Specifically, relevant constructs from contingency theory, social conflict and family decision making areas are integrated for the purpose of examining the impact of emerging cultural and socioeconomic issues upon family decision making. A series of propositions are developed within this framework and discussed in terms of their research and managerial implications.
[ to cite ]:
Donald J. Hempel and Lewis R. Tucker (1980) ,"Issues Concerning Family Decision Making and Financial Services", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 07, eds. Jerry C. Olson, Ann Abor, MI : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 216-220.

Advances in Consumer Research Volume 7, 1980     Pages 216-220


Donald J. Hempel, University of Connecticut

Lewis R. Tucker, University of Connecticut


Consumer researchers have largely ignored financial management issues relative to product specific decisions. A conceptual model is proposed to enhance understanding of family financial decisions. Specifically, relevant constructs from contingency theory, social conflict and family decision making areas are integrated for the purpose of examining the impact of emerging cultural and socioeconomic issues upon family decision making. A series of propositions are developed within this framework and discussed in terms of their research and managerial implications.


Research on family decision-making has investigated a number of role determinants over a wide variety of products, services and household activities (Davis, 1976; Ferber, 1973; Granbois, 1972; Hempel, 1974; Ferber and Lee, 1974; Sheth, 1974, 1971; Burns and Granbois, 1977; Granbois, 1978; and Burns and Ortinau, 1978). Studies specifically addressing family purchase behavior and financial services have consistently found beyond the short-term money management area that this tends to be a "husband dominated" decision area (Douglas and Wind, 1978; Douglas, 1978; and Green and Cunningham, 1975; Haley et al. 1975; Davis and Rigaux, 1974; Ferber and Lee, 1974 Blood and Wolfe, 1960; Starch, 1958; Sharp and Mott, 1956; Wolfgast, 1958). In general, however, consumer researchers have largely ignored financial management issues relative to product-specific decisions (Davis, 1976). Consequently, the roles of the different family members in making savings and investment decisions are largely a mystery (Ferber, 1973).

The purpose of this paper is to conceptually explore the family decision making impact of social changes, such as the promotion of sexual equality and the fuller integration of women into the economic fabric of society. Of particular concern is the relative influence of different family members in financial services decisions.  In order to systematically address these changing forces a model is developed, integrating findings from the contingency theory approach to organizational decision making (Duncan, 1972 and Galbraith, 1972) the social conflict area (Bricknan, 1974 and Fox 1974) and family decision-making. Attention is focused on the effects of environmental uncertainty on group decision making (Lawrence and Lorsch, 1967; Spekman and Stern, 1979) and its relationship to the sociological determinants of marital arrangements (Scanzoni, 1972, 1978; and Blau, 1964).

More specifically, assuming cultural changes viewed from a contingency theory perspective have created a less certain environment for marital organizations, the main question of interest here is what will be the effect on family decisions regarding financial services? This question will be examined by first developing a model integrating the relevant constructs from the contingency theory, social conflict and family decision making areas. The relationships proposed in this model will be used to guide a review of current research on emerging cultural and socioeconomic issues. This review in turn will serve as a means of generating a series of propositions concerning the impact these conceptually focused issues have on the major determinants of family decision making. Finally, attention is given to related research and managerial implications derived from these propositions for the marketing of financial services.


It is proposed that the contingency theory construct of environmental uncertainty can be used to explain the variability in family role structures. Major changes in the cultural and socioeconomic determinants of marital arrangements (Scanzoni, 1978) are equated to perceived external and internal environmental dynamics (Duncan, 1972 and Spekman and Stern, 1979) and studied in terms of their possible impact on family decisions for financial services.

The internal/external distinction used here is somewhat different than the one developed by contingency theorists. The perceived external environment is viewed similarly in that it encompasses the relevant macro physical and social factors outside the boundaries of the family decision-making unit. The boundaries encompassing the internal environment, however, are perceived not only as the family unit itself, but also its immediate social network including extended family, friends, and other reference groups. This "enlarged" view of the internal environment captures the moderating effects of the family's immediate social network on the perception and acceptance or rejection of external social change.

This treatment is similar to the contingency theorists view (Duncan, 1972; Rice, 1963) that a firm's organizational philosophy (internal environmental factor) will very much influence the degree to which specific decision making units will react to technological change (external environmental factor). In a similar vein, in her study assessing the impact on the family of women's economic role (Oppenheimer, 1977) states "...we must view families as units in the stratification system, not just as small groups faced with internal problems of maintaining good relations among members" (P. 404).

Thus, the traditional marital arrangements described by Fox (1974) as "spontaneous consensus" or what Brickman (1974) calls "fully structured" and those Blau (1964) views as being based on external "prevailing social norms" are postulated by the authors to contribute to family decision making internal environments of high certainty. Scanzoni summarizes these traditional marital arrangements as stable patterns in which "...there were no decisions to be made regarding the wife's chief life-interest and sphere nor the husbands." (P. 186) These traditional marital arrangements would be regarded in contingency theory terms as more "rigid" or "bureaucratic''. They result from the widely adhered to societal norm of sex-role segregation (Parsons, 1949; Oppenheimer, 1977; and Scanzoni, 1972). Contingency theory further posits that organizational units operating in more certain environments would be characterized by more specialized division of labor, less participation in decision-making and more formalized rules and procedures (Duncan, 1972 and Galbraith, 1973). Hence, an environment where institutionalized norms structure and prescribe the behavior of family members is considered one of high certainty. The parallel to contingency theory would be that the resulting traditional marital arrangement would possess properties similar to the bureaucratic organizational unit. In fact, most empirical research in this area (Green and Cunningham, 1975; Reynolds et. al., 1977; Parsons, 1949; Scanzoni, 1972; Brickman, 1974; Fox 1974, Lamouse, 1969) indicates husband or wife dominance prevails in traditional marital arrangements for a variety of decision areas and household activities. Given the existence of firmly prescribed behaviors, this dominance is also associated with the absence of bargaining, or negotiation and role interchangeability.

In recent years there has been growing evidence of significant changes in the sex or gender roles of women perceived by both spouses (Scanzoni, 1975; Parelius, 1975; Bayer, 1975; Mason et al., 1976; Tarvis, 1977; Bryant, 1977). These external environmental changes are likely to increase the uncertainty of the internal environment and directly impact on family decision making. This increased uncertainty is analogous to Brinkman's (1974) concept of "partial structuring". Partial structuring is described as a marital response to situations where institutionalized norms are not adequate to structure or prescribe behavior. The issue of uncertainty is also indirectly addressed by Scanzoni in his observation that, " role shifts towards egalitarianism (Goode, 1963), symmetry (Young and Willmott, 1973), individualism, modernity etc..., undermine the inevitability of a spontaneous consensus about basic marital organization. They remove it from the reality of the firmly prescribed and make it an area where extremely critical (and formerly uncommon) decisions must be made." (P. 186)

In family decision making terms these shifts are similar to the movement from a "consensus" goal to an "accommodation" goal and operational role structure (Davis, 1976).


Much of the empirical research concerning family buying decisions is summarized in several review articles that have been published in the last seven years (Davis, 1976; Sheth, 1975; Ferber, 1973; Granbois, 1972. More recent work has focused on addressing the methodological and research issues raised in the previously cited literature reviews (Douglas 1978, Douglas and Wind, 1978; Burns and Ortinau, 1978; Scanzoni, 1978, Burns and Granbois, 1977).

These studies provide a framework from which to speculate on the potential impact that changing external and internal environmental factors might have on husband-wife involvement in family decision making. The potential relationships are depicted in Exhibit 1. [Exhibits will be provided on request.] This model attempts to assess the significance of changes in a number of cultural and socioeconomic variables that have been either directly or indirectly researched as determinants of family decision making. These determinants are categorized as 1) Relative Resources; 2) Ideological; 3) Connectedness; 4) Experience; and 5) Product Involvement.

Relative Resources.  Family decision making roles are affected by "resources", such as the ability to reward or punish, personal competence, and attractiveness. Relative Resources are usually measured in terms of education, occupational prestige, income contribution, and employment status. These socioeconomic characteristics probably reflect a set of culturally determined expectations i.e. (Fox, "spontaneous consensus", 1974), "prevailing social norms" (Bleu, 1964),and "fully structured arrangement" (Brickman's, 1974) concerning the extent to which consensus versus accommodation (Davis, 1976) decision-making strategies operate in the family unit.

Perhaps, the most significant socioeconomic developments concern the occupational prestige and employment status of the American wife. This change is also very much related to the wife's educational attainment and income contribution. Recent statistics reveal that of the 36 million women in the labor some 22.4 million (63.2%) of them are married (U.S. Dept. Labor, 1975). In 1976 the number of two-income families surpassed those with only one provider (Hershman, 1979)

More remarkable than the increase in number of two income families, is the profile and underlying motivations of today's working wife. Although, many wives enter the workforce on a transitory basis to cope with external forces of inflation (Linden, 1979b), available data suggests that a growing number of working wives are career oriented (McCall, 1972; Hershman, 1979; Bartos, 1977; Oppenheimer, 1977). That is, their presence in the labor market is a function of their acceptance of external changing social values and attitudes regarding female family roles and emerging lifestyles. As a result, these modern labor force entrants are more highly educated, assume positions of higher occupational prestige and make substantial contribution to the family's financial well being (Linden, 1978a, 1978d; Lazer and Smallwood, 1977; Oppenheimer, 1977; Hershman, 1979; and McCall, 1977).

Given the narrowing gap between husbands and wives on resource issues, one would expect to observe more partial structuring (Brinkman, 1974) in martial arrangements or greater accommodation versus consensus decision making strategies (Davis, 1976) in the family. Recent findings by McCall (1977) and Reynolds et al. (1977) reinforce Scanzoni's (1978) thesis that at the "general policy" and "policy outworking" level that husband wife decision making is having to deal with issues that were rarely addressed in the past.

Ideological.  Related to the social values underlying the changes in workforce composition is the impact on sex roles in general. Partial structuring is not only taking place in working wife families but also among primarily younger single spouse working households. Findings presented by Reynolds et al. (1977) suggest that a sizable percentage on non-working wives identify with a modern feminine lifestyle (i.e., an egalitarian marital arrangement). Bartos (1977) reports that although working wives were generally more influential in purchase decisions for financial services, travel and automobiles, non-working wives also exhibited substantial decision making involvement in these areas. Similarly, McCall (1977) found more independence in decision making for "workwives" but noted that their housewife counterparts were influential in a number of product categories. Bryant (1977) has observed women who are not workforce participants readily agree that a women can combine motherhood and a career. This fundamental attitudinal change has been described by Roberts and Wortzel (1979) as the "institutionalization" of the concept and practice of working while being a wife and mother. Finally, Reynolds et al. (1977) present longitudinal data suggesting a dramatic decline in less than a decade in the number of women who strongly agree "a woman's place is in the home". Similar findings have also been reported by Mason et al. (1976).

Given the integration of the feminist or modern values among non-working wives one could again posit that family decision making will become more accommodation versus consensus oriented. Scanzoni (1978) views this transformation in terms of the absence in modern (younger) marriages of nonnegotiable issues, female negotiation strategies based on individualistic interests and more assertive negotiation processes. In effect, one might view the integrating of these modern feminine values into younger marriages and the reinforcement derived from the decision making units' internal social network as an additional "resources." That is, the erosion of male oriented "spontaneous consensus" values and the relative strength of emerging modern "feminist" values can be considered a non-employment related resource factor.

Connectedness.  Family social connectedness or the extent of similarity of friends and interests has been found to be inversely related to the degree of shared decision making. In traditional marital arrangements it was the consensus that wives would interact with husbands' work associates for both "intrinsic and "extrinsic" purposes (Spiegel, 1968). However, as Scanzoni (1978) suggests today's wives with occupational pursuits will likely develop their own peer networks and will not be readily available to participate with husbands in their outside interests.

Although recent research does not directly address the connectedness issue, several studies (Reynolds et al., 1977 and McCall, 1977) report significant involvement among working and non-working wives in a number of non traditional activity areas. Given the current trend towards female occupational involvement and the pursuit of satisfaction through activities outside the home one would expect to find less social connectedness and more joint decision making in the family. In contingency theorist terms the absence of social connectedness is likely to create greater uncertainty since feedback from the family's social network is derived from different sources, likely to be inconsistent and thus non-reinforcing.

Experience.  The family's experience as a decision making unit has been measured in terms of life cycle stages, ages of each spouse and the number of years married. Experience and joint decision-making have generally been inversely related.

A number of environmental forces are emerging that on one hand enhance the experience factor and on the other diminish it. More specifically, available evidence indicates a growing incidence of divorce in this country (Lazer and Smallwood, 1977; Brown, 1979 and Business Week, 1979). Since a large number of divorces result in marriage a great deal of "unlearning" and "relearning" is likely to take place the "second time around". Hence, accommodation or joint decision making strategies are posited to be predominant mode in these new marriages.

Conversely, one could also suggest that the trend toward premarital cohabitation would result in greater learning of each others needs, attitudes, capabilities etc. and thus more specialization. However, in view accelerating environmental change it could be argued that past experience becomes obsolete and specialization is less likely to be an effective decision-making strategy. Underscoring this position is Scanzoni's (1978) view that "increasing numbers of younger (better educated) men and women are bargaining with each other about their chief life interests" (P. 186). He further observes that the emergence of non-negotiable issues in the family results in bargaining in itself becoming a dynamic process. Presumably both these trends would work against routinization of decisionmaking and encourage strategies of accommodation. In short the uncertainty resulting from changing social values that make obsolete a family's previous experience, will likely lead more shared decisional making.

Involvement.  There is considerable evidence that husband-wife involvement varies with the product/service involvement. The most consistent findings indicate that joint decision making is more likely as the importance of the purchase increases. This importance factor is usually expressed as some combination of the level of expenditure involved, the consumption cycle, newness of the product and the expected usage of the product by various family members. These findings however, have been primarily derived by analyzing product attributes rather than explicitly measuring the extent of subjects' felt psychological involvement towards the product. More recently, Burns and Granbois (1977) building on the earlier work of Pollay (1968) and Morgan (1961) directly explore the moderating effect of psychological involvement in the family automobile purchase decision.

If Scanzoni's proposition is valid that modern women will tend to resolve family decision conflict on the basis of individualistic interests, then one could infer this would be a function of the increasing level of female psychological involvement in previously "structured'' decision areas. Recent evidence suggests that these individualistic interests are being reflected in a number of purchase and activity dimensions of the modern feminine life style (Bartos, 1977; Reynolds et. al., 1977; McCall, 1977; and Douglas and Urban, 1977).


The structuring of family roles concerning product-specific decisions in the financial services area is relatively unknown. Empirical information about marital roles in this decision area is generally derived from a single question about who is responsible for paying bills, budgeting, or savings and insurance decisions (Davis, 1976). This evidence indicates that there is considerable variability in role allocations from both cross-sectional and longitudinal perspectives.

Ferber (1973) has presented an excellent review of relevant studies in four areas of financial management: money management, spending behavior, savings behavior, and asset management. These studies indicate that shifts in relative experience, resource contributions and connectedness over the life cycle appear to produce a highly dynamic pattern of role allocations. For example, Ferber and Lee (1974) found that the financial decision roles shifted from joint action to individual action during the early years of marriage with the wife assuming responsibility for payment of bills and use of extra funds. The principal determinants of joint action were a goal for total savings and the similarity of husband and wife attitudes on savings priorities. The family's prevailing marital roles appear to significantly influence their financial decision outcomes. For instance, Ferber and Lee (1974) concluded that young couples were likely to be financially more venturesome if the husband rather than the wife is the FFO (financial officer). If the couple acting jointly is the FFO, they are likely to be saving a higher percentage of their income but primarily in fixed dollar form.

Ferber and Nicosia (1972) provide evidence that husbands and wives may not agree with each other on asset management and savings decisions. This internal conflict may require consideration of each spouse as a separate component of a complex decision process which involves many countervailing influences. Ferber and Nicosia suggest that the practice of treating a couple (or a family) as the decision making unit may be a mistake because of these internal differences. This conclusion is based upon an exploratory study of young married couples and probably reflects an early period of role structuring which gradually converges upon greater consensus and stability. However, when external changes are producing a high level of environmental uncertainty concerning marital role norms, this convergence process may be extended in time and the need for restructuring may occur more frequently. Given the emotionally charged nature of money management decisions in many families, the resolution process is likely to bring about considerable role strain, experimentation, and variability in reported role allocations.

Recent studies (e.g., Bartos, 1977) indicate that career women are much more involved than non-working women in financial activities such as savings account and credit card ownership. Although these studies do not provide much direct insight into marital role allocations, they do suggest that the knowledge, experience, and product interest of women concerning financial services are undergoing dramatic change. From the available anecdotal evidence and case studies (Duns Review, 1979), one can readily conclude that this demographic trend is likely to bring about profound social changes which are particularly relevant for marketers of financial services.

The apparent significance of life-cycle stage and the working-wife status of families as determinants of marital roles make them critical factors to consider in terms of their joint effects in any model of family decision making. Their interaction with the couple's goals and attitudes is likely to be an important set of intervening variables which modify the more tractable demographic effects.

This relatively small set of behavioral variables can be integrated into a predictive model of changing marital role structures for family financial decisions. Life cycle is a major determinant of how the generalized determinants of family decision makers will impact product-specific decision in the financial area. Marital roles in the purchase of financial services appear to evolve over the family life cycle. In the very early stages of marriage, joint decision making is typical (Ferber, 1974) as the separate value systems of each spouse are integrated into a common system of household priorities. After the first year or two of marriage, individual action becomes more likely as the growing volume of decisions force specialization and the willingness to rely on one's spouse facilitates autonomous action. At later stages of the life cycle, particularly when the career orientation of the wife increases or the parental responsibilities are satisfied, more joint action is required to deal with the emerging uncertainties.

The relevant environmental uncertainties are both internal and external to the household. The internal uncertainties stem from the shift toward longer range planning horizons required for decisions on career development, major investments, children's education and other major family issues. These changes interact with influences from the external environment prevailing during this period to determine the pace of internal convergence. When relevant influences in the external environment (e.g., inflation, interest, rates, recession, cultural expectations concerning wife-mother roles) are unstable, the rate of convergence and return to conditions which support specialized decision making is likely to be delayed.

The process of role structuring and the convergence of attitudes concerning acceptable marital roles is likely to involve an informal bargaining process similar to that described by Scanzoni (1979). Each spouse's input to this "negotiation" process is determined by the relative resource contribution, experience, and product interest/involvement. The rate at which consensus is reached and the stability of the role structure established is affected by the internal ideological convergence of husband/wife attitudes toward marital roles, their perceived external environmental uncertainty and the degree of family connectedness. Both the stability of reported role allocations and the extent of specialization within family decisions are likely to increase as the role structuring process converges. Significant changes in the family's internal or external environment (e.g., unplanned pregnancy or unprecedented inflation rates) are likely to upset this convergence process. Some of the more important implications of these relationships are addressed in the propositions presented in the following section.


A number of propositions concerning family role structure and its impact upon financial decisions can be developed from the conceptual framework presented in the previous sections. These statements serve to identify relationships for testing subsequent empirical studies. In many instances, they are assertions about relationships that are expected to emerge during the 1980's rather than simple extrapolations from past findings. The significant environmental changes anticipated are expected to generate new systems of relationships which require greater use of an inductive approach in developing these propositions.

P1:  The wife's intent to work and/or to remain employed outside the home will increase with the amount of environmental uncertainty perceived by either spouse.

P2:  WW families in which the wife's decision to work is motivated primarily by short-term internal economic concerns (e.g., budget deficit, special purpose savings) are (a) less likely to share financial decisions, and (b) more likely to specialize along traditional role structures for these decisions (i.e., autonomic structure).

P3:  Working wives from the more affluent households are more likely to remain employed and adopt a career orientation toward their job.

P4:  As the expected duration or "permanency" of the wife's employment increases, she is likely to gain confidence in making financial decisions and her spouse is more likely to accept her involvement in these decisions.

P5:  The time lag between attitude and behavioral changes concerning desirable role structures in family financial decisions will be directly related to (a) the duration of the wife's employment; (b) the permanency or expected duration of the wife's employment; and (c) the relative occupational status of the wife vs. husband.

P6:  Increasing environmental uncertainty concerning inflation and interest rates will shift longer term priorities from fixed dollar savings to more complex investments (e.g., real estate and securities). Consequently:

a.  Additional uncertainty in the family's internal environment to learn about alternative types of investments (generic products) and specific investment opportunities (brands).

b.  The couple's effort to cope with this increasing uncertainty encourages more joint decision making and enhances recognition by both spouses of the potential need for and value of the wife's employment.

c.  As the wife's commitment of full-time career oriented employment increases, her knowledge and involvement in financial decisions is also likely to increase.

P7:  As the level of perceived environmental uncertainty increases, the following shifts in financial management decisions are likely to occur:

a.  Shared decision making is likely to increase in all longer-term financial service commitments;

b.  Husbands are less likely to be involved in short-term money management decisions (e.g., check writing, budgeted expenditures); and

c.  Wives are more likely to be involved in savings and asset management decisions.

P8:  As the family role structure involves more shared decision making, the following shifts in financial service purchases are likely to occur:

a.  Ownership of marketable securities is likely to increase;

b.  Ownership of real estate is likely to increase;

c.  Residential real estate purchases are more likely to be regarded as an investment rather that merely a purchase of shelter; and

d.  The percentage of family assets in fixed dollar form is likely to decline.

P9:  When the WW family's lifestyle(as manifested in consumption patterns) places greater emphasis upon socioeconomic status, financial decisions are more likely to be shared.


Increasing rates of family role changes and high levels of economic uncertainty are producing new pressures on family decision making in the financial services area. The generalization that financial decisions tend to be "husband dominated" areas needs to be examined in the light of these and other cultural and economic changes taking place in our society. Perhaps the most significant of these changes stems from the growing proportion of career-oriented working women.

The joint impact of national demographic (e.g., age/lifecycle bulge) shifts and economic crises (e.g., inflation) are likely to generate conditions of high environmental uncertainty during the next decade. A large segment of the population will be entering the critical mid-life transition stage during a period of considerable uncertainty about both social norms and economic stability. The combined effect of these conditions is especially significant for family decisions concerning financial services. Partially offsetting the growing levels of uncertainty in the external environment are a set of internal changes which increase role structure stability. One factor is the growing tendency toward childless marriages or postponement of children. The consequent elimination of or delay in life-cycle transition stages facilitates the convergence of husband/wife values. This extension of the childless stage allows family values to become better established before high levels of internal change are encountered. Hence the role structures established in the early years of marriage may become more persistent and less susceptible to change. Similarly, the learning process associated with pre-marital experience of living together may extend the opportunity for the convergence of attitudes governing family role structures. This structuring process may occur even though the experience of one couple may be transferred to another family unit via separations and new affiliations.

A broader conceptual framework is needed to explain and predict the impact of these changes upon purchase behavior in financial services markets. One requirement for this framework is the treatment of financial decisions as a consumption system with greater recognition of the trade-offs and portfolio implications involved. This treatment is particularly important for the more affluent families who are the heavy user segment of many financial service markets.

A second requirement for the family financial decision model is the need to treat both the family and individual spouses as the relevant decision making units. As Ferber and Nicosia (1972) have suggested, it may not be appropriate to treat the family as the unit for certain types of financial decisions in the early stages of the family life cycle. This logic is contradictory to more recent arguments in the consumer behavior literature which are gravitating toward the family unit approach. Rather than debating the merits of each approach or waiting for a comprehensive study to provide reliable empirical distinctions, it would be more practical to assume that life-cycle stage and lifestyle are significant mediators in family decisions concerning financial services. They probably operate jointly to determine the extent of shared vs. individual decision making in many other areas as well. It will be difficult to research these relationships because the environmental uncertainty now existing in our society is likely to produce considerable instability in family role structure.

If these two major requirements are incorporated, the integrated framework would focus upon family financial decisions as a multi-person and multi-product consumption system. The effects of family life cycle and life style could then be studied in the context of the perceived environmental conditions within the household. Given the high rate of change and levels of environmental uncertainty, it is unlikely that sufficient perceptual homogeneity will exist in most geographical areas to permit effective studies of family decision making without controlling for these significant perceptual difference.


Rend Bartos, "The Moving Target: The Impact of Women's Employment on Consumer Behavior", Journal of Marketing, Vol. 41 (July, 1977) pp. 31-37.

Peter M. Blau, Exchange and Power in Social Life (New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1961).

Robert Oscar Blood Jr., and Donald M. Wolfe, Husbands and Wives (Glencoe, Ill.: The Free Press, 1960).

Phillip Brickman, Social Conflict (Lexington: MA.: D.C. Heath Co., 1974).

George H. Brown, "Bulletin: Divorce Rate Jumps From 1 Percent to 2 Percent in 10 Years!" Across the Board, Vol. (July, 1979) pp. 6-7.

Barbara Everett Bryant, American Women Today and Tomorrow, (Washington D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office), 1977.

Alvin C. Burns and Donald H. Granbois, "Factors Moderating the Resolution of Preference Conflict in Family Automobile Purchasing", Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. 14 (February, 1977) pp. 77-86.

Alvin C. Burns and David J. Ortinau, "Underlying Perceptual Patters in Husband and Wife Purchase Decision Influence Assessments", Advances in Consumer Research, Vol. 6 (Ed. Association for Consumer Research: Chicago, 1978) pp. 371-376.

Remaining references are available upon request..