The Readability of Finance Articles and the Number of Citations: Can Articles Be Too Straightforward to Be Cited?
50 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2017 Last revised: 23 Sep 2018
Date Written: August 22, 2018
We study the readability of academic publications and how it impacts article citations. We analyze 4,160 finance articles published in leading journals from 2000-2016, and find a positive correlation between reading complexity and the number of citations achieved by a paper. However, this result does not hold for 8,236 articles published in eleven less recognized finance journals. The patterns suggest that researchers prefer unintelligibly written papers from leading journals when underlining the importance of their own work. This preference poses a challenge to editors and reviewers who must evaluate the final contributions of submitted papers within the academic publication process.
Keywords: Academic writing, Readability, Textual Analysis, Finance Literature, Scientometrics, Journal Reputation
JEL Classification: D83, G00, G10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation