Locked-in at Home: Female Analysts' Attention at Work during the COVID-19 Pandemic

77 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2020 Last revised: 8 Apr 2022

Date Written: October 27, 2020

Abstract

This paper explores the shock of school closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to study the effect of childcare responsibilities on analyst forecasts. With manually collected data on whether analysts have children, I show that female analysts, especially mothers, are less likely to issue timely forecasts after school closures compared to their male counterparts and shift forecast release time to hours without intensive housework. Female analysts' forecasts also become less accurate after school closures, but the negative effect only exists among forecasts for firms with relatively low institutional ownership. Even though female analysts are more likely to get distracted by school closures, they strategically allocate their labor to mitigate the negative impact of childcare responsibilities on their careers.

Keywords: Sell-side analysts, Earnings forecast, Limited attention, Gender inequality

JEL Classification: G24, G41, J16, J22

Suggested Citation

Du, Mengqiao, Locked-in at Home: Female Analysts' Attention at Work during the COVID-19 Pandemic (October 27, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3741395 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3741395

Mengqiao Du (Contact Author)

University of Mannheim ( email )

L9, 1-2
Mannheim, 68161
Germany

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