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Xie, Zhixin and Page, Lionel and Hardy, Ben (2017) 'Investigating Gender Differences under Time Pressure in Financial Risk Taking.' Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 11 (246).

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There is a significant gender imbalance on financial trading floors. This motivated us to investigate gender differences in financial risk taking under pressure. We used a well-established approach from behavior economics to analyze a series of risky monetary choices by male and female participants with and without time pressure. We also used second to fourth digit ratio (2D:4D) and face width-to-height ratio (fWHR) as correlates of pre-natal exposure to testosterone. We constructed a structural model and estimated the participants’ risk attitudes and probability perceptions via maximum likelihood estimation under both expected utility (EU) and rank-dependent utility (RDU) models. In line with existing research, we found that male participants are less risk averse and that the gender gap in risk attitudes increases under moderate time pressure. We found that female participants with lower 2D:4D ratios and higher fWHR are less risk averse in RDU estimates. Males with lower 2D:4D ratios were less risk averse in EU estimations, but more risk averse using RDU estimates. We also observe that men whose ratios indicate a greater prenatal exposure to testosterone exhibit a greater optimism and overestimation of small probabilities of success.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: testosterone, 2D:4D, fWHR, time pressure, risk taking
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Finance & Management
ISSN: 16625153
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 10 Apr 2018 08:30


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