From the Editor
This first issue of Financial
Counseling and Planning, the journal of the Association for Financial
Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE), represents the efforts of many
people. This journal is intended to meet the needs of those involved in
formal and informal education related to financial management and financial
counseling and planning. A rigorous review process will be maintained.
Each manuscript submitted is screened by the editors. Appropriate manuscripts
are sent to three reviewers. The seven articles in this issue represent
half of the manuscripts submitted. Thirty people reviewed manuscripts for
this issue. The editor, associate editor, and assistant editor also reviewed
the manuscripts. The use of a large number of reviewers will help insure
that the journal’s focus and standards will reflect those of the membership
of the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education.
A common focus of many members of AFCPE is an interdisciplinary
approach to financial management issues, an approach that some would identify
human ecological approach. Although not every article appearing
in this journal will have an interdisciplinary or human ecological approach,
the mixture of articles in this issue and in future issues will give readers
a variety of approaches to the study of financial management. The goal
of this journal is to provide reports of research and discussion of educational
issues that will be useful to financial counseling and planning educators
and to practitioners.
The first article of this issue, Family Resource Management
Research: 1930-1990, by Israelsen, provides an illustration of the
human ecological approach to the study of family financial management.
A financial counselor or educator needs to focus on the total picture of
family resources, not just financial resources. A researcher in the area
of family financial management can benefit from the study of research about
other family resource management topics, such as those listed in Table
1 of Israelsen’s article. Approximately half of the research topics might
be considered family financial management topics, but the other topics
might be very relevant to some financial counseling applications.
Patterns and Obstacles to Financial Management,
by Davis and Weber, adds to the body of research on financial management
practices. The authors found that a minority of respondents used all four
recommended practices, thus raising questions for future research.
The Ratio Technique Applied to Personal Financial Statements,
by Prather, represents the first comprehensive testing of a set of household
financial ratios proposed by Griffith at the 1985 AFCPE meeting. Prather’s
article presents distributions of the household ratios for a sample of
U.S. households, and the percent of households meeting Griffith’s suggested
levels. Prather suggests modifications of some of Griffith’s ratios to
make them more usable.
Sensitivity of a Retirement Analysis Framework to Changes
in Retirement Analysis Parameters, by Burns and Widdows, is an applied
study of the role home equity, net worth, and an estimate of permanent
income play in determining retirement savings needs. Their results can
be used by financial planners in their retirement analysis frameworks.
Attitudes Toward Seeking Financial Counseling: Instrument
Development, by Lown and Cook, represents a substantial contribution
to the development of an instrument for assessing attitudes toward financial
counseling. The large sample and the careful analyses in the article, combined
with the many implications for researchers, educators, and counselors,
make this a very useful article.
Children of Divorce: Financial Counseling Issues for
Custodial Parents, by Seiling and Jackson, deals with some of the financial
implications of divorce. The financial and legal aspects of divorce are
intertwined, but not all attorneys are prepared to fully evaluate the financial
aspects. Some attorneys are hiring financial planners to consult on these
issues. Given the incidence of divorce, financial planners should be aware
of some of the issues discussed.
Dairy Farm Families’ Financial Management, by Scannell,
examines the financial practices of dairy farm families. The results may
have implications for other small businesses.
The articles in this issue demonstrate some of the topics
appropriate for this journal. Other topics related to family financial
management will be included in future issues.
Hanna, S. (1990). Comments from the editor. Financial
Counseling and Planning, 1, 1-2.