The purpose of this study was to investigate compensatory consumption propensity by male and female college students. The subjects of the study were 483 college students in Seoul, and SPSS 12.0 was used for statistical analysis. Two different types of compensatory consumption were considered separately positive compensatory consumption and negative compensatory consumption. The major findings were as follows. First, for male college students, drinking was the most preferable means of compensatory consumption to compensate for both negative and positive emotions. For female college students, their consumption patterns tended to include clothing purchase and eating-out for positive emotions and eating-out, reading and drinking for compensating negative emotions. Second, for both male and female students, the consumption propensity for compensating positive emotion was found to be higher than that for compensating negative emotion. And the consumption propensities for compensating positive and negative emotions were higher for female students when compared to those of male students. According to the results of regression analysis showing the relative effect of each variable to compensatory consumption, sex and consumption tendency were found to be relative variables on both positive and negative compensatory consumptions. Female students were found to be more likely to consume for compensating emotion than male students after other variables were controlled. For positive compensatory consumption, consumption propensity and materialism were found to be the most effective variables, and for negative compensatory consumption, materialism was the most effective variable.
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