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The visible hand: finger ratio (2D:4D) and competitive bidding

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  • Matthew Pearson

    ()

  • Burkhard Schipper

    ()

Abstract

In an experiment using two-bidder first-price sealed bid auctions with symmetric independent private values and 400 subjects, we scan also the right hand of each subject. We study how the ratio of the length of the index and ring fingers (2D:4D) of the right hand, a measure of prenatal hormone exposure, is correlated with bidding behavior and total profits. 2D:4D has been reported to predict competitiveness in sports competition (Manning and Taylor in Evol. Hum. Behav. 22:61–69, 2001 , and Hönekopp et al. in Horm. Behav. 49:545–549, 2006 ), risk aversion in lottery tasks (Dreber and Hoffman in Portfolio selection in utero. Stockholm School of Economics, 2007 ; Garbarino et al. in J. Risk Uncertain. 42:1–26, 2011 ), and the average profitability of high-frequency traders in financial markets (Coates et al. in Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 106:623–628, 2009 ). We do not find any significant correlation between 2D:4D on either bidding or profits. However, there might be racial differences in the correlation between 2D:4D and bidding and profits. Copyright Economic Science Association 2012

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Experimental Economics.

Volume (Year): 15 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 510-529

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Handle: RePEc:kap:expeco:v:15:y:2012:i:3:p:510-529

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=102888

Related research

Keywords: Hormones; Digit ratio; 2D:4D; Risk behavior; Competition; Competitive behavior; Auctions; Bidding; Endocrinological economics; C72; C91; C92; D44; D81; D87;

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  1. Anne Case & Christina Paxson, 2006. "Stature and Status: Height, Ability, and Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 12466, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Hamermesh, Daniel S & Biddle, Jeff E, 1994. "Beauty and the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1174-94, December.
  3. A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2008. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 414-427, August.
  4. Pearson, Matthew & Schipper, Burkhard C, 2009. "Menstrual cycle and competitive bidding," MPRA Paper 16784, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Morgan John & Steiglitz Ken & Reis George, 2003. "The Spite Motive and Equilibrium Behavior in Auctions," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 1-27, April.
  6. Burkhard Schipper, 2014. "Sex hormones and choice under risk," Working Papers 147, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  7. Emel Filiz-Ozbay & Erkut Y. Ozbay, 2007. "Auctions with Anticipated Regret: Theory and Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1407-1418, September.
  8. Greiner, Ben, 2004. "An Online Recruitment System for Economic Experiments," MPRA Paper 13513, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. David, Cesarini & Dawes, Christopher T. & Johannesson, Magnus & Lichtenstein, Paul & Wallace, Björn, 2007. "Genetic Variation in Preferences for Giving and Risk-Taking," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 679, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 12 Jan 2009.
  10. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  11. Burkhard Schipper, 2014. "Sex hormones and competitive bidding," Working Papers 144, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  12. Chen, Yan & Katuščák, Peter & Ozdenoren, Emre, 2013. "Why canʼt a woman bid more like a man?," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 181-213.
  13. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000. "Gender Differences in Pay," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 75-99, Fall.
  14. Marco Casari & John C. Ham & John H. Kagel, 2005. "Selection bias, demographic effects, and ability effects in common value auction experiments," Staff Reports 213, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  15. Ellen Garbarino & Robert Slonim & Justin Sydnor, 2011. "Digit ratios (2D:4D) as predictors of risky decision making for both sexes," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 1-26, February.
  16. Cox, James C & Smith, Vernon L & Walker, James M, 1988. " Theory and Individual Behavior of First-Price Auctions," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 61-99, March.
  17. Chen, Yan & Katuscak, Peter & Ozdenoren, Emre, 2007. "Sealed bid auctions with ambiguity: Theory and experiments," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 136(1), pages 513-535, September.
  18. Ham, John C. & Kagel, John H., 2006. "Gender effects in private value auctions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(3), pages 375-382, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Buser, Thomas, 2012. "Digit ratios, the menstrual cycle and social preferences," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 457-470.
  2. Neyse, Levent & Brañas-Garza, Pablo, 2014. "Digit Ratio Measurement Guide," MPRA Paper 54134, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Patricio S. Dalton & Sayantan Ghosal, 2014. "Self-Confidence, Overconfidence and Prenatal Testosterone Exposure: Evidence from the Lab," Working Papers, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow 2014_02, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow.

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