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Original article Performance pressure and mental health among finance workers in Korea: a cross-sectional study
Yu Min Lee1orcid , Hyoung-Ryoul Kim2orcid
Epidemiol Health 2023;e2023099
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023099 [Accepted]
Published online: November 7, 2023
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1Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
2College of Medicine, the Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea
Corresponding author:  Hyoung-Ryoul Kim,
Email: cyclor@catholic.ac.kr
Received: 24 July 2023   • Revised: 16 October 2023   • Accepted: 19 October 2023

While issues related to mental health, including suicide, have been frequently reported among finance workers, no formal investigation has been undertaken. This study was conducted to analyze correlations between indicators of performance pressure, which is a characteristic of the finance sector, and mental health.
An online survey was administered to 1,181 participants. Brief questionnaires were employed to ask general questions about participant characteristics, work environment, and the presence of performance pressure, suicidal thoughts/plans/attempts, depression (indicated by the Patient Health Questionnaire-9), and anxiety (measured with the Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7). Frequency analysis, chi-square testing, and multivariate logistic regression analysis were performed.
Of the 1,181 respondents, 797 (83.54%) reported feeling pressure to perform at work, while 252 (26.42%) admitted to occasional willingness to achieve results even through illegal activities. Multivariate logarithmic regression analysis was employed to examine the correlation between performance pressure and mental health. This analysis revealed that those expressing willingness to achieve results through illegal activities exhibited higher levels of suicidal ideation (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.63; 99% confidence interval [CI], 1.04-2.55), plans (aOR, 1.75; 99% CI, 1.01-3.01), and attempts (aOR, 2.72; 99% CI, 1.06-6.98). Additionally, these individuals demonstrated higher levels of depression (aOR, 2.02; 99% CI, 1.34-3.06) and anxiety (aOR, 2.84; 99% CI, 1.81-4.46).
Performance pressure is prevalent within the finance industry. This pressure serves as a major source of stress for employees and is evident in 3 representative indicators of mental health: suicide, depression, and anxiety.

Epidemiol Health : Epidemiology and Health