This study examines the associations among financial hardship, perception of situation, social support, and perceived stress using data from the second wave of the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States. Both financial hardship and perception of situation were hypothesized to be positively associated with perceived stress, whereas social support was hypothesized to act as an intervening variable between perception of situation and perceived stress. The results from a structural equation model showed that (a) financial hardship was a precursor of perception of situation, (b) perception of situation exhibited a positive effect on perceived stress, and (c) social support was negatively related to the level of perceived stress. Keywords: financial stress, financial well-being, Midlife Development in the United States (MIDUS), social support, stress

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