Math anxiety effects on consumer purchase decisions: the role of framing

Peter Andersen, Fei L. Weisstein, Kent B. Monroe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Mathematics anxiety, an emotional state resulting in negative responses to math problems and numerical information, has been extensively studied in educational psychology. Research on the impact of math anxiety on consumer purchase decisions, however, is still in its nascent stages. This paper examines the interaction between math anxiety and different promotion framing formats on consumers’ perceived savings, price acceptability, and purchase decisions. Across two studies, we demonstrate that consumers with varying levels of math anxiety respond differently to various promotion frames: a gain versus a reduced loss and a single discount versus multiple discounts. We further show that consumers with insufficient math ability may experience negative affect and heighten math anxiety, particularly when faced with numerical and arithmetic tasks commonly encountered while shopping.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalMarketing Letters
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • Math anxiety
  • Perceived savings
  • Price acceptability
  • Promotion framing
  • Purchase intention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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