NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

CEO Personality and Firm Policies

Ian D. Gow, Steven N. Kaplan, David F. Larcker, Anastasia A. Zakolyukina

NBER Working Paper No. 22435
Issued in July 2016
NBER Program(s):Corporate Finance, Labor Studies

Based on two samples of high quality personality data for chief executive officers (CEOs), we use linguistic features extracted from conferences calls and statistical learning techniques to develop a measure of CEO personality in terms of the Big Five traits: agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism, and openness to experience. These personality measures have strong out-of-sample predictive performance and are stable over time. Our measures of the Big Five personality traits are associated with financing choices, investment choices and firm operating performance.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22435

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