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Strong Evidence for Gender Differences in Risk Taking

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  • Charness, Gary
  • Gneezy, Uri

Abstract

Are men more willing to take financial risks than women? The answer to this question has immediate relevance for many economic issues. We assemble the data from 15 sets of experiments with one simple underlying investment game. Most of these experiments were not designed to investigate gender differences and were conducted by different researchers in different countries, with different instructions, durations, payments, subject pools, etc. The fact that all data come from the same basic investment game allows us to test the robustness of the findings. We find a very consistent result that women invest less, and thus appear to be more financially risk averse than men.

Suggested Citation

  • Charness, Gary & Gneezy, Uri, 2012. "Strong Evidence for Gender Differences in Risk Taking," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 50-58.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:83:y:2012:i:1:p:50-58
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2011.06.007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    8. Renate Schubert, 1999. "Financial Decision-Making: Are Women Really More Risk-Averse?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 381-385, May.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Gender differences; Experiment; Risk attitudes;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • B49 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Other
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G19 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Other
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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