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Delegated Decision Making and Social Competition in the Finance Industry


Lindner,  Florian
Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Max Planck Society;

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Kirchler, M., Lindner, F., & Weitzel, U. (2018). Delegated Decision Making and Social Competition in the Finance Industry.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-D7D0-1
Two aspects of social context are central to the finance industry. First, financial professionals usually make investment decisions on behalf of third parties. Second, social competition, in the form of performance rankings, is pervasive. Therefore, we investigate professionals’ risk-taking behavior under social competition when investing for others. We run online and lab-in-the-field experiments with 965 financial professionals and show that professionals increase their risk taking for others when they lag behind. This effect, however, disappears when professionals’ incentives are flat. Additional survey evidence from 1,349 respondents reveals that professionals’ preferences for high rankings are significantly stronger than the general population’s.