Born to Be Wild: Second-to-Fourth Digit Length Ratio and Risk Preferences

60 Pages Posted: 22 Nov 2021

See all articles by Brian Finley

Brian Finley

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Adriaan Kalwij

Utrecht University

Arie Kapteyn

Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research - University of Southern California; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: November 19, 2021

Abstract

The second-to-fourth digit length ratio of an individual’s hand (digit ratio) is a putative biomarker for prenatal exposure to testosterone. We are examining the hypothesized negative association between the digit ratio and the preference for risk taking within a large U.S. population survey. Our statistical framework provides a cardinal proxy for the true digit ratio based on ordinal digit ratio measurements and accounts for measurement error under the assumptions of Gaussianity and time-invariant true digit ratios. Our empirical findings support the hypothesis and suggest a meaningful biological basis for risk preferences.

JEL Classification: A12, C8, D01

Suggested Citation

Finley, Brian and Kalwij, Adriaan and Kapteyn, Arie, Born to Be Wild: Second-to-Fourth Digit Length Ratio and Risk Preferences (November 19, 2021). CESR-Schaeffer Working Paper No. 004, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3967606 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3967606

Brian Finley

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Adriaan Kalwij

Utrecht University ( email )

Janskerkhof 12
Utrecht, 3512 BL
Netherlands

Arie Kapteyn (Contact Author)

Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research - University of Southern California ( email )

635 Downey Way
Los Angeles, CA 90089-3332
United States
310-448-5383 (Phone)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Downloads
79
Abstract Views
478
Rank
558,636
PlumX Metrics