Your Gender Identity Is Who You Are: Female CEOs and Corporate Debt Structure

44 Pages Posted: 6 May 2020

See all articles by Qi Zhu

Qi Zhu

Central South University

Yuxuan Huang

Hunan University

Cheng Yan

University of Essex - Essex Business School

Yeqin Zeng

Durham University Business School, Finance and Economics

Date Written: April 10, 2020

Abstract

We examine the implications of CEO gender for corporate debt structure. After controlling for endogeneity, firms with female CEOs issue less debt than firms with male CEOs. Although both risk aversion and overconfidence may serve as the channel of our main finding, we show that female CEOs being more risk averse is the underlying mechanism. Further, we find that the CEO gender effect is more pronounced for firms with younger CEOs, higher litigation risk, and more market competition. We also find that firms with female CEOs are more likely to keep positive debt capacity and have longer debt maturities.

Keywords: Gender, CEO, Debt Structure, Risk Aversion

JEL Classification: G12, G32, G34, J16

Suggested Citation

Zhu, Qi and Huang, Yuxuan and Yan, Cheng and Zeng, Yeqin, Your Gender Identity Is Who You Are: Female CEOs and Corporate Debt Structure (April 10, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3572752 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3572752

Qi Zhu

Central South University ( email )

Changsha, Hunan 410083
China

Yuxuan Huang

Hunan University ( email )

2 Lushan South Rd
Changsha, CA Hunan 410082
China

Cheng Yan

University of Essex - Essex Business School ( email )

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester, CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

Yeqin Zeng (Contact Author)

Durham University Business School, Finance and Economics ( email )

Office 162 Durham University Business School
Mill Hill Lane
Durham, DH1 3LB
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/yeqinzenghomepage/

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