Stature, Obesity, and Portfolio Choice
George M. Korniotis
University of Miami
University of Miami - School of Business Administration
May 7, 2013
Using multiple U.S. and European data sources, we show that observed physical attributes are related to risk-taking behavior in financial markets. We conjecture that heterogeneity in observed physical attributes can be associated with personality differences that induce relatively taller individuals to take greater financial risks and relatively over-weight individuals to favor less risky investment choices. Consistent with this conjecture, we find that individuals who are tall and of normal weight relative to their peers are more likely to participate in financial markets, and when they participate, they hold riskier financial portfolios. Early childhood experiences and teenage experiences are likely to be the two channels through which height could affect financial decisions.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 51working papers series
Date posted: November 21, 2009 ; Last revised: May 7, 2013
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