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MasterCard's Hello Kitty Debit Card Contributes to Epidemic of Compulsive Buying, Says Roberts

Oct. 15, 2004

The new "Hello Kitty" debit card introduced by MasterCard(R) (www.hellokittycard.com) encourages poor money management skills and over-spending among adolescents, says Baylor University's Dr. James Roberts. Roberts is a well-known expert in the field of credit card use and compulsive buying. His research shows that credit card misuse is rampant among college students and that Generation Y is 10% compulsive buyers, which is about double that of Generation X and 3-4 times higher than the Baby Boomer generation. "Giving credit cards to adolescents and children makes spending and management of money even more abstract for them." he said. "We've found that adults or teenagers who use credit cards are less price sensitive, spend more, and over-estimate their available wealth compared to those who write checks or pay cash."

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